Iraq's Former President Jalal Talabani Died, (84)

Iraq's Former President Jalal Talabani Died, (84).
Jalal Talabani, former Iraqi president and Kurdish politician, has died in Germany aged 84.



Talabani, was Iraq's president from 2005 to 2014 and a key figure in Iraqi Kurdistan, where voters last week overwhelmingly backed independence in a controversial referendum.

And the first non-Arab president of Iraq and was in office from 2005 to 2014.

A family member said Talabani's health had taken a turn for the worse and he been transported to Germany, along with his wife and two children, before the referendum.

Zana Said, Iraqi Kurdish politician, paid tribute to Talabani as "the only president whose death saddens Arabs, Kurds and all other ethnicities".

About Talabani.

Talabani was an avuncular politician and a skilled negotiator, who spent years building bridges between the country's divided factions, despite his efforts for Kurdish independence.

Born in 1933 in the mountain village of Kalkan, he studied law at Baghdad University and did a stint in the army before joining the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) of Mullah Mustafa Barzani, father of Masoud Barzani, current Kurdistan regional president.

Talabani took to the hills in a first uprising against the Iraqi government in 1961 but famously fell out with Barzani, who sued for peace with Baghdad, and joined a KDP splinter faction in 1964.

Eleven years later, he established the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) after Barzani's forces, abandoned by their Iranian, US and Israeli allies, were routed by Saddam Hussein's army.


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