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Iraqi Election Facts

Democracy Comes to Iraq

On Jan. 30, Iraqis voted for democracy and for their future. Across the globe, over 14 million Iraqis registered to vote. Over 265,000 Iraqi expatriates voted abroad, representing 93.6 percent of those registered to vote. In Iraq, 184,000 local officials ran almost 5,200 polling centers for millions of Iraqis voters, and Iraqi security forces protected the polling centers. Despite the risks, Iraqis have shown their commitment to democracy.

U.S. Department of State and the Iraqi Out-of-Country Voting Program (

Election Materials Arrive in Iraq

Election materials in Iraq are being distributed on schedule. By Jan. 25, all materials had arrived at the Iraqi regional warehouses. The materials were brought into Iraq on 130 flights by cargo planes - some of which flew 15 flights a day to deliver the supplies. The AN-225 - the world's largest cargo plane - made five trips. There are 60 million individual ballot sheets and nearly 900,000 ballot boxes. Polling stations will have all equipment necessary by Jan. 29, just in time for the elections on Jan. 30.

Source: U.S. Department of State

Iraqi Forces Provide Security at Voting Centers

More than 14 million Iraqis will have the opportunity to vote Sunday at nearly 6,000 voting centers across Iraq. The Iraqi Ministry of Interior is primarily responsible for providing security at the election sites. Iraqi National Guard and Iraqi military forces will also be help secure polling stations. Military forces from 29 countries are working with the Iraqi forces to ensure a safe and secure election day for the Iraqi people.

Source: U.S. Department of State

Iraqis to Elect Transitional National Assembly on Jan 30

On Jan. 30, Iraqis will elect a Transitional National Assembly, which will select a Presidency Council consisting of a President and two Vice Presidents. In turn, the council will choose the Prime Minister and approve the cabinet. The majority of the National Assembly must approve the Prime Minister and cabinet. Another important task for the National Assembly is drafting Iraq's permanent constitution, which the Iraqi people should complete and approve by October 2005.

Source: U.S. Department of State

More Than 24,000 to Observe the Iraq Elections

Election observers will play an important role in Iraq's Jan. 30 elections. The observers will monitor voting, check the implementation of election rules and regulations, and assess the integrity of the process. Observers will watch all steps of the electoral process, from preparation, to voting, to vote counting. Their reports will then be made public. In addition to the 12,000 observers, candidates and political entities will have more than 12,500 registered observers. The Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq's chief election administration, Mr. Adel Al-Alami says: "We must ensure that Iraqi's first free elections for more than 50 years are free and fair. The mission of observers and political entity agents who will monitor the electoral vital."

Source: Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq (

256 Iraqi Political Entities Compete in Election

Iraqis have demonstrated a widespread enthusiasm for the political process of the Jan. 30 elections. In total, 18,900 candidates have registered to compete. These candidates comprise 256 political entities on the ballots - 196 parties, 33 coalitions of parties and 27 individuals. The election will be conducted based on a closed list proportional representation system with the entire country considered as a single electoral district.

Source: U.S. Department of State

Majority of Iraqis Likely to Vote in Jan. 30 Elections

Iraqis are likely to vote in their Jan. 30th elections, according to an International Republican Institute poll released yesterday. Over 80 percent of Iraqis polled are either very likely or somewhat likely to vote. Confidence that the balloting will be secret is high, with 70 percent very confident or somewhat confident in secrecy of the vote. Close to 75 percent of Iraqis polled had received accurate official materials regarding voter registration , and more than 80 percent have read or heard about the elections in the media. Iraq will be prepared to hold elections, say nearly 75 percent of the respondents. Iraqis continue to be optimistic about the future of their country as they approach their first democratic elections.

Source: International Republican Institute (

Iraqis Participate in Election Training Seminars

The Iraqi Election Information Network (EIN) Board of Directors participated in a three-day training seminar on observing the Jan. 30 elections. The seminar featured two leaders of election monitoring organizations from Peru and the Philippines who shared their experiences with managing elections in difficult political and security environments. During the seminar, EIN designed an election monitoring plan involving committee development, media strategy, crisis management, election-day activities, and a deployment schedule for election monitors. Iraqis are developing their skills to ensure that election day runs smoothly.

Source: U.S. Agency for International Development

Iraqis Set Criteria for National Assembly Members

Under Iraqi Transitional Administrative Law, nominees to the National Assembly must meet certain criteria. Candidates must be Iraqi citizens and at least 30 years of age. They must have good reputations and at least secondary school diplomas. Former members of the abolished Ba'ath Party with the rank of Division Member or higher are not eligible. Anyone who held a lower rank must sign a document renouncing the Ba'ath Party and disavowing all past links with it. This is another example of ways that Iraqis are creating conditions for a free and democratic government.

Source: Transitional Administrative Law

Iraqis Train Iraqis In Preparation for Elections

Iraq's Coalition of Non-partisan Elections Monitors has trained representatives of non-governmental organizations to monitor the elections. In its most recent training session, members of the non-partisan coalition and 41 representatives from 24 different NGOs attended. In addition, 27 Iraqi elections trainers from South Central Iraq, 33 from Southern Iraq and 22 from Baghdad participated in other NGO-sponsored workshops. In another training initiative, 30 Iraqi journalists attended media and elections training in the Al Basrah governorate. These are just a few examples of Iraqis working to ensure that their elections are free and democratic.

Source: The U.S. Department of State

IECI Administers Iraq Elections

The Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq (IECI) will supervise the Iraqi elections and is designed to ensure a fair and transparent process. The UN Electoral Assistance Division is advising the IECI, and many NGOs are providing technical support and assistance. The commission has 150 staff members at its national headquarters, 126 at governorate offices, 120 trainers, and more than 6,000 electoral workers at Voter Registration Centers throughout Iraq.

Source: U.S. Department of State

Iraqi Women Prepare for Democratic Election

Iraqi women will play an important role in the 2005 election. The Transitional Administrative Law requires a 25 percent female membership in the Parliament. The U.S. Department of State awarded $10 million in grants to several non-governmental organizations to ensure that women in Iraq are full participants in building this new democracy. The Iraqi Women's Democracy Initiative is helping to fund and train women candidates to compete and lead in the new National Assembly.

Source: U.S. Department of State

Iraqis Eager to Build a Democracy

Despite terrorist intimidation, Iraqis are eager to take the next step in forming a democratic government. A recent Iraqi public opinion poll conducted by the International Republican Institute (IRI) showed that 71.4 percent of Iraqis polled intended to vote in the January 30 elections. The majority believe that Iraq will be ready to hold elections and are confident that their vote will be secure and secret. After years of oppression, Iraqis now have the opportunity to build a functioning democracy.

Source: International Republican Institute ( and U.S. Department of State

January 30 Election Is First of Three in Iraq

Iraqis will vote for their futures on Jan. 30 in the first of three elections to be held there this year. Later this month, Iraqis will vote for members of the 275-seat National Assembly, provincial governments, and a Kurdistan National Assembly. By Aug. 15, the National Assembly will draft a new constitution. By Oct. 15, Iraqis will vote on a draft of this constitution in a nationwide referendum. On Dec. 15, Iraqis will go to the polls one final time to elect a democratic government based on that constitution. Then finally, by Dec. 31, the democratic government will take control of Iraq.

Source: U.S. Department of Defense

Iraqis Ready to Vote

Iraqis are enthusiastic about voting in the National Assembly on January 30. More than 14 million Iraqis are registered to vote. Iraqi expatriates in 14 countries will also be able to cast their ballots. Nearly 19,000 candidates have registered for the elections to the National Assembly, the 18 provincial councils, and the Kurdistan National Assembly. 100 coalitions and parties have registered for spots in the new National Assembly on the national ballot alone. The Jan. 30 election is the first of three times Iraqis will vote this year.

Source: U.S. Department of State

Iraqi Expats to Vote in January Elections

Iraqi citizens living outside Iraq will be able to vote in the elections for the Iraqi National Assembly on January 30, 2005. A memorandum of understanding was signed on December 27th between the Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq and the International Organization for Migration to establish of an Iraq Out-of-Country Voting Program. The program provides for Iraqis living in Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Iran, Jordan, the Netherlands, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States to vote. Negotiations are still under way with Syria, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates, so Iraqis living in these countries can also participate in the elections. These efforts help ensure that as many Iraqis as possible can vote.

Source: International Organization for Migration (