President Talabani returned home
His return has ended the doubts about his ability to ever come home
Iraqi Kurdish President Jalal Talabani returned to Kurdistan on Saturday, 19 July after taking successful medical treatment for 18 months in Germany, the PUK politburo published a statement a day before.
He had been immediately taken to Baghdad’s medical complex in December 2012 as he suffered from a stroke. Later, he was transferred to Germany to receive high standard health care.
The statement read: “Talabani is going to resume his duties as president of the Republic of Iraq.”
There had been many reports and articles saying that Talabani was dead and some made jokes about it and said he was in a fridge. This was adamantly denied by the officials from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK). Some also said if he was alive, he would never be able to return home due to his poor health condition.
The news of his homecoming ended all the rumours and was a response to those who rushed in publishing false information about a man who could gather all the fighting factions and disparate groups under his presidential umbrella.
The news of the homecoming of the president has been widely reported by the Kurdish media.
Many facebook users expressed their happiness and said they would at- tend the welcoming ceremony of the president.
Talabani’s son who is also deputy to Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Prime Minister confirmed his father’s returning.
"President Talabani will return to Iraq tomorrow. I congratulate the people on his improved health and on his return," he told AFP.
His return coincides with worst crisis in years. A large part of the country is under the control of the Islamic State (IS, formerly known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria ISIS).
They took control of a large swathe of the country’s west and north from Mosul to Jalawla.
Recent weeks have also seen escalating tensions between the Shiite-led government of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and Talabani's ally Massud Barzani, the president of the Kurdistan Region.
The Kurdish Peshmarga forces seized large swathes of the long-disputed territories as the Iraqi army pulled out in the face of the Islamic State's onslaught that begun on 9 June , 2014.
They also took control of two key oilfields around Kirkuk, an oil-rich city which the Kurds have given innumerable martyrs to during the last 50 years of fighting for freedom. . President Barzani visited the city and said that he was there to support Peshmarga forces, adding that he was also ready to take arms to defend it personally.
PM Maliki has accused the Kurds of undermining national unity, seizing the opportunity of the ISIS offensives and even harbouring some its operatives.