Ezidis in Shingal form assembly

Shingal, Nineveh, April 2019 – Ezidis in Giruez subdistrict – photo: KirkukNow

Amar Aziz - Nineveh

A number of notables Shingal have formed a new 'Ezidi Assembly' whose members will be elected by the residents of the district, with the aim of conveying demands of residents and to monitor governmental work.

The formation of the new assembly was announced on Tuesday (1 December, 2020) at the Sharafadin Shrine. Tribal leaders, clerics, and political and security figures took part in the meeting, including those who objected to the manner of the appointment of the new Ezidi spiritual leader (Baba-Shékh) and the Mir (prince) of the Ezidis.

Haydar Shasho, commander of the Ezidkhan Protection Forces and one of the founders of the assembly, told KirkukNow that there has been a demand to form such an assembly since before 2014 meant to function as a type of parliament for Ezidis in order to monitor the government’s functionality and convey the demands of Ezidis.

But Baghdad and Erbil officials, along with Ezidis in Shékhan (in Nineveh) did not take that request seriously, Shasho adds, that’s why they formed the assembly themselves.

Right after the formation of the assembly, its members convened for a meeting to draw working plans.

According to Shasho, the new assembly consists of 60 members, so that each member represents five thousand citizens in Shingal. And it is possible to increase the number of the members with population increase in the district. Between 10 and 15 seats have been allocated to women.

All the members of the council will be elected by Shingal’s residents within a month, and the members in turn will elect a chairperson with a number of deputies.

ezdidi shgall
Shingal, 2020 – Haydar Shasho during the announcement of the new assembly – image: KirkukNow

The founders of the assembly consist of dissidents, among them Haydar Shasho, who has quit as commander of a Peshmerga force and as a member of the KDP.

“After assuming its duties, this assembly will take the final decision regarding the Ezidi Mir and the new Baba-Shékh. If the majority agree [with their appointments], then we will recognize the Mir and the Baba-Shékh, if not, then we will officially reject them" Haydar Shasho said.

The dissenters in Shingal, including tribal, political and military figures, refuse to recognize the Ezidi Mir, Hazem Tahseen and the new Baba-Shékh, Ali Alias, due to what they described as "political party interference” and “ignoring their opinion" in their appointment processes.

Hasan Khayro Mirza, another member of the assembly, told KirkukNow: “The government and the organisations are confused; they don’t know whom to talk to among the Ezidis. That’s why the formation of that assembly will allow things to be done much easier, because the assembly will represent all the Ezidis in Shingal.”

“The assembly is not engaged with political issues; it is not against any political party, and its only aim is serving the people of Shingal district,” Shasho added.

The majority of Ezidis in Iraq reside in Shékhan district in Nineveh province (but administered from Erbil) and Shingal district in west of Nineveh province.

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