The beloved Kurdish leader Jalal Talabani passed away on Tuesday in a hospital in Germany. Talabani was appointed president of Irak in 2005 by the Transitional National Assembly, he was the country’s first non-Arab president, and was instrumental in creating the current Iraqi constitution.
Talabani was the founder and Secretary General of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), one of the main Kurdish Iraqi political parties. Talabani, who was about to turn 84, he resigned as head of state in 2014 due to health conditions. Many observers attributed the deterioration of relations between Baghdad’s central government and the regional government of Erbil to his absence. In a curious twist of history, the veteran of the Kurdish cause was also the man who helped keep Iraq together.
A man with a great sense of humor, Talabani stood out from the outset for his diplomatic skills, aided by the fact that besides Kurshish he spoke fluent Arabic, Persian and English.
We extend our most sincere condolences to the widow, Hero Ibrahim Ahmed, his two sons, Bafel and Qubad, and all those who loved Mam Jalal.