>> After a failed bid for independence last year, Kurds voting again on Sunday in Northern Iraq. This time for a parliamentary election that could disrupt the delicate balance of power in their semi-autonomous region.>> This election is important both regionally and nationally. The Kurds are an important part of government formation in Iraq.
And it's been nearly five months since the national election in May, which was inconclusive. And they've been struggling to form a government ever since.>> Reuters Raya Jalabi says despite economic hardship and corruption, the current political dynasties are expected to extend their rule. The Kurdistan Democratic Party, KDP, and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, PUK, have been sharing power for almost three decades.
Splits within the PUK could push the KTP into a dominant position in Kurdish politics, both regionally and in the difficult formation of a federal government in Baghdad. But voter frustration is rising. Even though relations with Baghdad have improved since the referendum, the Kurdish region has lost territory and economic autonomy.
>> The mood is somewhat muted. It's been a year since a failed independence bid was launched in Iraqi Kurdistan, Kurds voted overwhelmingly for independence but saw a lot of their dreams dashed after Baghdad launched a swift and decisive backlash. People don't expect change. A lot of the people that we've been encountering on the streets talking to them, asking them about the election say consistently we don't want to vote anymore.
We voted consistently and nothing's ever changed. We have spent three years without consistently paid salaries, we've had enough.>> As a result, voter turnout is expected to be thin on the ground, less even than that of the record low during May's federal election. Low turnout however could benefit the KDP and PUK whose voters tend to be more committed.
Respecting their role in establishing autonomy after the Gulf War in 1991.