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Parliament holds second reading of Bill on Sale and Lease of Public Assets

Kurdistan Parliament Speaker Dr. Rewaz Faiq opened the sitting of 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, with a speech in which she said, “On this day my thoughts and prayers are with the souls of the women who have been killed, and I salute the bravery and perseverance of women who are fighting tirelessly for our rights.”

Speaker Faiq asked the courts and relevant authorities in the Kurdistan Regional Government to implement the Law on Combating Violence Against Women, and asked Parliament’s Protection of Women's Rights Committee to prepare a report on amendments needed to address shortcomings of the law, in cooperation with the Kurdistan High Council of Women's Affairs and the Interior Ministry’s General Directorate for Combating Violence Against Women, and to submit the report to Parliament’s Presidency. This is essential so that Parliament and other bodiers can become true protectors of women’s rights in Kurdistan Region, the Speaker said.

The Speaker asked MPs to hold a minute’s silence in memory of Erbil Governor Dr. Firsat Sofi and a former MP in Kurdistan Parliament’s fourth term who recently died of Coronavirus.

The chair of the Relations and Kurdish Diaspora Committee, Dr. Rebwar Babkayi, with the backing of several MPs, asked for the debate on the committee’s report on youth emigration to be postponed to a later date, because the relevant government ministers were absent from the sitting. Eight-seven (87) MPs voted in favour of postponing the discussion.

An ad hoc committee to look into allegations by Dr. Kazim Faruq Namiq, the head of the New Generation Movement parliamentary block, of threats against him by other MPs, presented their findings. Rizgar Shahid Nagrey (Change Movement) read out the findings on behalf of the ad hoc committee, which was formed under Resolution No. 8 of 2020.

Speaker Faiq said, “From the committee’s comments and clarifications, we understand that it could not obtain the necessary evidence and therefore could not come to a conclusion about the allegations.”

Therefore the Presidency decided to delete from the Parliament record Dr. Kazim Faruq’s accusations, MPs’ answers and the related procedures of the sitting of 9 September 2020.

The Speaker said, "Given that investigation of criminal acts is the responsibility of the justice system, [rather than going down that route] we ask MPs to forgive each other and that the matter be closed."

Parliament then turned to the second reading of the Bill on the Sale and Lease of Public Assets in Kurdistan Region, with the Legislative and Finance committees reading all of the articles and MPs and Dr. Vala Fareed, Minister of the Region for Parliament Affairs, giving their feedback and suggestions in detail.

Speaker Faiq said that Parliament will sit again on Monday 30 November.