'Iraqi VP Al-Hashemi a guest in Turkey'

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay said al-Hashemi was a guest in Turkey under the protection of Turkish officials, as Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs states red bulletin issued by Interpol aimed at sharing information among countries, not an arrest warrant

'Iraqi VP Al-Hashemi a guest in Turkey'

World Bulletin/News Desk

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay said Thursday that Turkey was a country known for its hospitality and Iraqi Vice-President Tariq al-Hashemi was a guest in Turkey under the protection of Turkish officials.      

Speaking to reporters in Keskin town of the central Anatolian province of Kirikkale, Atalay said that Turkey had sensitivities in hosting guests even if the Interpol issued a red bulletin against a certain guest.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said the red bulletin issued by Interpol against Iraq's Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi aimed at sharing information among countries, thus it was not an arrest warrant.      

"The red bulletin issued by Interpol is basically the organization's move to share a piece of information with other countries upon a notice by a member country. Therefore, it is not an international arrest warrant," said MFA spokesperson Selcuk Unal at a press briefing in Ankara on Thursday.      

"Besides, Interpol is not authorized to demand an arrest or extradition from the related country or member countries in connection with this issue," he said.      

Upon a question on Iraqi government spokesman Ali Al Dabbagh's recent remarks stating that Turkey's failure to extradite al-Hashemi might harm Turkey-Iraq relations, Unal said Turkey's expectations and policy regarding Iraq were clear.      

"Turkey does not intervene in Iraq's internal affairs. It does not have a secret or secondary agenda either," he underscored.      

The spokesperson said Turkey would continue to monitor the developments in Iraq as a neighboring country, moreover, it would hold talks with all political groups in that country as it attached importance to Iraq's stability.      

He also said al-Hashemi had not sought asylum in Turkey, and after all, he was still Iraq's vice president.      

Interpol on Tuesday issued a red bulletin against Tariq al-Hashemi, placing him on its most-wanted list upon the demand of the Iraqi national government.      

Al-Hashemi, currently in Turkey for medical treatment, is being tried in absentia in Baghdad on charges of terrorism as well as guiding and financing death squads that targeted government officials, security forces and Shiite pilgrims.      

The vice president denies the charges and claims those charges are politically motivated.      

Turkish Deputy Premier Bekir Bozdag said Wednesday that al-Hashemi was in Turkey for medical treatment and Turkey had no plans to extradite him.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 10 Mayıs 2012, 14:51

Muhammed Öylek

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