The second part of the three-phase elections in the Northern Syrian Federation will be held tomorrow. The first part was on September 22 with the election of Commune Co-chairs. Voters will go to the ballots tomorrow and elect town, district and canton council members to determine the local governments. The last phase in the elections, elections for the Northern Syrian People’s Congress is expected to be held in January 2018.

The Northern Syrian Federation is holding elections for the first time after it was declared in a congress with 200 delegates from Kurdish, Arab, Syriac and Êzidî populations in Rimelan on March 16, 2016. The Federation consists of the Cizîr, Euphrates and Efrîn regions. It is governed with an understanding of self government and is based on the principle that each region governs itself in economy, security and defense.

After the announcement, the Northern Syrian Democratic Federation Constituent Assembly approved the Northern Syrian Federation Elections Act and Administrative Regions Act and determined a three-phase election calendar. According to the calendar, the elections in the Northern Syrian Federation will continue with Local Government/Council elections, and conclude with the Northern Syrian People’s Congress elections in January 2018.

The first phase was held on September 22 and according to data from the High Election Commissary, 728.450 voters went to the ballots and elected Commune co-chairs. The second phase of the elections will be held tomorrow and the citizens will be electing council members for towns, districts and cantons to determine the local governments. We gathered the official data from the High Election Commissary under several titles.

WHEN DID THE SECOND PHASE START?

The Democratic Northern Syrian Federation Executive Council issued a statement on September 26 where they congratulated the successful completion of the Commune co-chair elections and announced that preparations for the second phase had begun. After the candidates were declared, propaganda efforts were launched. By 00.00 last night, the election bans began.

HOW MANY VOTERS VOTED IN THE PREVIOUS ELECTIONS?

The voters in election zones for the Commune co-chairs were:

* The Cizîr Area: 437.142

* The Euphrates Area: 135.611

* The Efrîn Area: 155.697

High Election Commissary Co-chair Ruken Mele Ibrahim announced that by November 15, 2017 a total of 808.495 voter cards were distributed in all election areas. According to this announcement, the number of voters has increased by 100.000 from the previous election.

According to High Election Commissary records, the voter cards were distributed as:

* The Cizîr Area: 510.500

* The Euphrates Area: 137.000

* The Efrîn Area: 160.995

WHEN DOES VOTING START?

Voting will begin at 08.00 on December 1 and continue until 20.00. If the High Election Commissary sees fit, voting could be extended until midnight the same day the latest. Voters will go to the ballots in 1.303 centers. The voting centers are dispersed among election areas as:

* The Cizîr Area: 841

* The Euphrates Area: 256

* The Efrîn Area: 206

There will be 6 ballot officers and 2 back-ups in each center, a total of 8 people. There will be a total of 10.825 ballot officers, who will be dispersed among election areas as:

* The Cizîr Area: 5.046 members, 1.682 back ups

* The Euphrates Area: 1.535 members, 512 back ups

* The Efrîn Area: 1.640 members, 410 back ups

HOW WILL THE VOTES BE CAST?

Voters who go to the ballots have to show their IDs, voter cards or passports at the ballot. Voters who have none of these documents will not be allowed to vote. A voter will only be allowed to vote in one center. There will be 3 separate ballots for town, district and canton council members. The voting slips will be in 3 colors, and have been prepared in sections with the lists of the Democratic Nation Solidarity and Syrian Kurdish National Coalition, and names of independent candidates. Voters will mark the corresponding sections for their choice of candidates on blue slips for district council members, white for town council members and grey for canton council members.

HOW WILL THE ELECTION SECURITY BE ENSURED?

To have the elections go without issues, the Rojava Asayish, Self Defense Forces and Sotoro Asayish Forces have taken all necessary precautions in election areas. As part of security precautions for the elections, the Rojava Asayish has banned the use of motorcycles and trucks from 08.00 on November 29 to 15.00 on December 2.

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