Laven Redar, 33, will become a member of Swedish parliament (Riksdag) for the third time on the Social Democrats' list, according to preliminary results of Sunday's September 11 parliamentary elections.
She was born in Stockholm yet her father was born in Dubiz district, northwestern Kirkuk, and her ancestors were from Redar of Shiwan subdistrict in northeastern Kirkuk. Her mother is from a Kurdish town of Iran.
Redar is a graduate of Stockholm University Law School and has worked for the Swedish Save the Children.
“Through our efforts, the organization introduced the right of self-determination for the Kurdish nation in all four parts of Kurdistan (Iraq, Iran, Syira and Turkey) and called on our party to consolidate this demand,” Redar told KirkukNow in an interview when she was elected as member of the parliament for the second time.
Redar's father was a member of one of the Kurdish opposition parties to the oppression of the Iraqi regime under Saddam Hussein. He left Baghdad University in the late 1970s and became a member of Kurdish Socialist Party PASOK in the Iraqi Kurdistan region mountains. In 1982, he quit and later settled in Sweden.
Redar believes her parents' struggle for freedom influenced her to pursue political career as a means of achieving her goals.
It is important that no one in Kirkuk is persecuted because of their ethnic background or political thoughts
“Every day my parents brief me about the news and events in all parts of Kurdistan. They have always encouraged me to fight for human freedom and Kurdistan.”
Regarding Kirkuk, she emphasized coexistence and justice in the administration of the city four years ago. As her father was deported from the city because of ideology and was deprived of education, she was concerned that no one is to be persecuted because of his ethnic background or political thoughts.
Redar was elected to the Swedish Parliament for the first time in 2014, then she was only 24 years old.
"It is important that Kirkuk oil falls into the hands of a democratically elected administration and the revenue is used for the people of the city, for schools, hospitals and other services.”
Redar has focused on reducing unemployment among the youth and the housing crisis. At the same time, she worked on the Kurdish cause.
One of the activities in which she was actively involved was influencing the Swedish government to provide military assistance to the Kurdish Peshmerga in the fight against so-called Islamic State of Iraq and Syria ISIS (2014-2017).
“We made sure that the Swedish trainers continue training the Peshmerga following ISIS war,” she said.
Redar recalls that she and her group have managed to convince former Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, after visiting Baghdad, to visit Erbil and met with the Iraqi Kurdistan Region President IKRP.
Laven emphasized she has worked actively to convince the Swedish government to provide aid for the internally displaced persons IDPs in the Kurdistan Region and Iraq. In addition to aids via the United Nations UN, Sweden has sent physicians and psychiatrists to Kurdistan for the IDPs and victims of ISIS.