Iraq extends biometric voter registration for IDPs

The Independent High Electoral Commission of Iraq has extended the biometric voter card registration period for internally displaced persons (IDPs) around the country, KirkukNow reports.

The deadline for voter registration had been July 11, but registration and renewal exercises at IDP camps are now scheduled to conclude on August 11. An estimated 15 percent of Iraq’s population, or 6 million people, fled their homes to escape the advance of Islamic State violence, and only four million have returned to their home areas, according to the report.

The loss of essential documents such as ID cards and birth certificates has posed a major barrier to IDPs in the country, but biometric voter cards and other documents enabled more than 450,000 IDPs to vote in the country’s recent parliamentary elections. Mobile teams have been assigned by the electoral commission to issue the biometric cards in IDP camps across the country, and particularly in Kurdistan Region provinces. There are 17 camps in Duhok, and 6 each in Erbil and Sulaimaniyah provinces.

The election is proposed for April 2020, though a final date has not yet been approved.

The Iraqi Ministry of Interior and Veridos partnered to build a new factory for secure identity document production in Baghdad in 2018.

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