Entries in President Jalal Talabani (2)


Iraqi President to Be Treated for Stroke in Germany

Hadi Mizban-Pool/Getty Images(TEHRAN, Iran) -- Described in grave but stable condition, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani will receive treatment in Germany for a stroke he suffered earlier this week.

The 79-year-old, who is from Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdish region, was believed well enough to make the trip.  Talabani has previously received treatment abroad for other medical conditions, although some believe that his stroke may be more debilitating than the government is letting on.

Khudayr al-Khuzai, a Shiite who is one of Iraq's two vice presidents, will assume Talabani's responsibilities in his absence.

Although the role of president in Iraq is largely ceremonial, given that most of the power is concentrated in Prime Minister Nouri al-Malaki's office, Talabani is nonetheless considered an influential figure because of his keen negotiating skills to smooth out differences between Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds.

His affliction comes at a particularly perilous time in Iraq's still-fledgling democracy -- a year removed from the complete U.S. military withdrawal from the country.  Among other problems, the Shiite-dominated central government is in a dispute with Kurds about land and oil that both sides are laying claim to.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Vice President Biden Arrives in Baghdad to Meet with Iraqi Political Leaders

Photo Courtesy - ABC News (BAGHDAD) -- Vice President Biden has arrived in Baghdad for meetings with Iraqi political leaders.

This is Biden’s seventh trip to Iraq since January 2009. He traveled to Afghanistan and Pakistan already this week.

Biden is scheduled to meet with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, Iraqiyya leader Ayad Allawi, President Jalal Talabani, Speaker Osama al-Nujaifi, and other political leaders.

Last month he commended Iraq’s political leaders for the formation and swearing-in of the new coalition government, led by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

“There are many challenges ahead, but I am convinced Iraq is up to them.  The United States stands ready to help and to strengthen even more the important partnership we have built,” Biden said in a paper statement in December.

Biden was in regular contact with Iraqi leaders over the last nine months as they struggled to form this coalition. He traveled to Baghdad in late August to mark the official end of the U.S. combat mission there and also met with Maliki and Allawi, the former prime minister who lead a Sunni-backed coalition that was jockeying for power with Maliki since the March elections.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio