SULAIMANIYAH, Iraq: A gunman opened fire on supporters of Iraqi Kurdistan's main opposition party, wounding a man, barely two weeks ahead of regional parliamentary elections, officials said Friday.
The shooting, which occurred at 11:00 pm (2000 GMT) on Thursday in the region's second city Sulaimaniyah, targeted a gathering for the Goran bloc, the third-biggest political party in Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region and the largest opposition grouping.
Sulaimaniyah province security chief Awat Ahmed said the man was wounded in the chest by a gunshot, and said the authorities were still looking for the assailant.
Provincial health spokesman Siamend Khaled said the victim was in stable condition.
The shooting comes ahead of September 21 parliamentary elections in the three-province northern region, and is the second attack on Goran supporters in the run-up to the polls.
This week, five people were wounded -- two supporters, two policemen and a journalist -- when a group of people targeted a Goran gathering with sticks and water bottles.
Goran, which means change in Kurdish, surprised many observers with a strong performance in July 2009 regional parliamentary elections.
The party failed, however, to break the duopoly on power held by the Kurdistan Democratic Party of regional President Massud Barzani and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) of Iraqi President Jalal Talabani.
It is looking to expand further in the upcoming polls, particularly in its home base of Sulaimaniyah province where it competes fiercely with the PUK.