Political violence has reportedly struck Sulaymaniyah, ahead of the July 25 election. Kurdish journalists report that the Kurdish Minister of Peshmerga Affairs (basically, the Kurdish Minister of Defense) sealed a street where an opposition group was rallying, and beat men, women, and children who were wearing the colors or waving the flags of a list challenging Jalal Talabani’s political party. Talabani’s security forces have also taken to arresting journalists.
Meanwhile, Iraqi Kurdish president Masud Barzani’s security forces have begun to detain and disappear candidates challenging his political party.
Iraqi Kurdistan risks serious instability as Talabani and Barzani show that, despite all their talk of democracy in Kurdistan, their parties do not take such principles seriously.