Salih, Kadhimi Say Iraq Ready to Hold Elections in Oct.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi sought on Saturday to assure that his government is ready to hold parliamentary elections as scheduled on October 10.

He held an extraordinary government meeting that was attended by governors and officials concerned with the elections. He also personally oversaw a training, held at the joint command headquarters, related to security during the elections.

Kadhimi is scheduled to travel to Tehran on Sunday.

Addressing the cabinet, he said tight security measures will be in place to prevent any violations or voter fraud during the elections. United Nations and international observers will also be overseeing the vote.

“These elections are an important moment in Iraq’s history. We are working on restoring the dignity of the state where rule of law is applied and violations are prevented,” he continued.

“Once the security agencies succeed in protecting the electoral process and imposing the rule of law, then citizens will be assured that the state has regained a lot of its authority and has succeeded in overcoming several challenges that Iraq had encountered in recent years,” Kadhimi added.

He did reveal that he has received several complaints that some parties have been threatening citizens to vote for them in the elections. He called on the security agencies to firmly deal with these threats.

The PM on Saturday also took part in a conference marking the Islamic Day for Opposing Violence against Women. Speaking at the event, he declared: “There can by no solution in Iraq without holding elections.”

President Barham Salih, several ministers and Iraqi officials also attended the conference.

Speeches at the event focused on the need to provide a sound legislative environment at the new parliament with the aim of ensuring the women’s rights.

Salih stressed that the world was looking forward to the elections and for the government to successfully organize them.

He called on all political and social forces to support the choices of the voters.

Moreover, he noted that Iraq needs structural reform and that the elections would pave the way for the establishment of legislative and executive authorities that can provide reform, revive the country and combat corruption.