🇮🇶What’s next for Iraq after first election since mass protests? | The Stream

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Al Jazeera English published this video item, entitled “🇮🇶What’s next for Iraq after first election since mass protests? | The Stream” – below is their description.

Iraq’s attempt to pick a new parliament this week was marked by record-low turnout and the re-election of many familiar faces. The polls opened early due to youth-led anti-government protests amid worsening economic conditions in 2019.

Though young people had called for the early elections, millions of them boycotted the polls this week to express their distrust in the system and its potential for reform.

This week, more than 3,000 candidates vied for some 329 positions, and for the first time one-quarter of seats were reserved for female candidates, as well as nine for minorities including Christians and Yazidis.

The party that wins the most seats will choose the country’s next prime minister, but without a clear winner, negotiations are expected to take months.

In this episode of The Stream, we’ll discuss what happens now that the polls are closed in Iraq and the votes are tallied. Will the results usher in change, or will sectarian divisions and dysfunction remain the law of the land? Join the conversation.

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About This Source - Al Jazeera English

The video item below is a piece of English language content from Al Jazeera. Al Jazeera is a Qatari state-funded broadcaster based in Doha, Qatar, owned by the Al Jazeera Media Network.

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  • In This Story: Iraq

    Iraq, officially the Republic of Iraq, is a country in Western Asia. The capital and largest city is Baghdad. Iraq is home to diverse ethnic groups including Arabs, Kurds, Turkmen, Assyrians, Yazidis, Shabakis, Armenians, Mandaeans, Circassians, Sabians and Kawliya. Around 99% of the country’s 38 million citizens are Muslims, with small minorities of Christians, Yarsans, Yezidis and Mandeans also present. The official languages of Iraq are Arabic and Kurdish.

    Iraq has a coastline measuring 58 km (36 miles) on the northern Persian Gulf and encompasses the Mesopotamian Alluvial Plain, the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range and the eastern part of the Syrian Desert. Two major rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates, run south through Iraq and into the Shatt al-Arab near the Persian Gulf. These rivers provide Iraq with significant amounts of fertile land. The region between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, historically known as Mesopotamia, is often referred to as the cradle of civilisation.

    Iraq is a federal parliamentary republic consisting of 19 governorates, four of which make up the autonomous Kurdistan Region. Disputes over the sovereignty of Kurdistan Region continue.

    Iraq is a founding member of the UN as well as of the Arab League, OIC, Non-Aligned Movement and the IMF.

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