Residents of Kurdish-majority areas of northern Syria cast their votes in the region's first local elections, in Rojava's Qamishli, Friday, in a bid to set up new governing institutions to secure regional autonomy. Friday's election is the first phase of a three-phase process, during which representatives at the district, municipal and regional levels will be elected. During the first phase... Еще, leaders for some 3,700 communes from across three areas, where Kurdish groups have established autonomous rule, will be elected. The vote will be followed by election on November 3, during which executive councils for towns will be elected, election on January 19, which will see the vote for a joint legislative assembly and legislative councils for each of the three regions. The reception of the vote on Qamishli streets was varied, with one resident lauding the election, saying that «it is the first time I am electing the one who will represent me, my opinion and my will,» while another resident condemning the vote and calling it a «separatist project.» The vote comes three days before an independence referendum organised by Kurds in Iraq. The vote has been opposed by Damascus, Ankara and Washington.