Iraq releases Kurdish politician with PKK links

Iraq releases Kurdish politician with PKK links
September 13th, 2006  
Team Infidel

Topic: Iraq releases Kurdish politician with PKK links

Iraq releases Kurdish politician with PKK links
Media: AFP
Byline: N/A
Date: 13 September 2006

SULAIMANIYAH, Iraq, Sept 13, 2006 (AFP) - An Iraqi Kurdish politician with
links to Turkey's outlawed PKK guerrillas was released on Wednesday in
northern Iraq after being held for six days in connection with a murder

Walking free in the Kurdish city of Sulaimaniyah, Faik Mohammed Kolbi
insisted on his innocence and showed a document from a judge ordering his
release, as he was greeted by a crowd of supporters.

The arrest of Kolbi, who leads the Kurdish Democratic Solution (KDS), came a
month after Iraq promised Turkey it would crack down on the Turkish Kurdish
separatist rebels.

The KDS is an Iraqi ally of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which has
been fighting the Turkish army in Kurdish majority areas of southeastern
Turkey since 1984 in a war which has claimed 37,000 lives.

Last month, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki promised Ankara that the PKK
would no longer be allowed to operate in Kurdish northern Iraq after
allegations that it had mounted renewed cross-border raids.

Kolbi was arrested as a suspect in the February 2005 murder of a PKK
dissident, Kamal Shahin, an Iraqi security official said.

Supporters ruled out any link, and argued that Kolbi's detention was a sop
to Turkey from Iraqi authorities eager to show that they are serious in
their crackdown.

Kolbi, a former surgeon who has been a leading Kurdish militant since 1980,
was elected to the parliament of Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region in 1992.
He has led the KDS since 2001.

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