The Kurdistan Regional Parliament of Iraq elected the leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and current Prime Minister of the region, Nigervan Barzani, as the new president for the next four years, in voting held in Erbil on Tuesday.

According to reports, Barzani received 68 votes of the 81 members present in the 111-seat chamber. The Kurdistan Patriotic Union (PUK) of the late Iraqi President Jalal Talabani reportedly agreed to boycott the vote.

According to Sherko Jawdat, Chairman of Oil and Gas Committee at Kurdistan Islamic Union, they did not attend the voting for being the first bloc to declare an open opposition.

The new president is expected to select his cousin, Masrour Barzani, as a candidate for prime minister.

The position of president was frozen when Massoud Barzani, Nechirvan's uncle, stepped aside after the 2017 independence referendum.

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Associated Press 11 May 2020 11:44 CEST

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