Sign In / Up

Add contribution as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Comment as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Login

Not a member Register   Forgot Password
or connect using
 

Email

 

Rudaw

Kurdistan

Prominent Kurdish doctor missing, sought by police

By Rudaw 28/8/2015
Azer, who lives in Vancouver, Canada, was legally permitted to leave the country with his two sons and two daughters, but an warrant was issued when he failed to return by August 21 as ordered by the court.
Azer, who lives in Vancouver, Canada, was legally permitted to leave the country with his two sons and two daughters, but an warrant was issued when he failed to return by August 21 as ordered by the court.

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Canadian police and Interpol are searching for Dr Saren Azer, a prominent physician and Kurdish activist who disappeared Friday with his four children while on a trip to Germany.

Azer, who lives in Vancouver, Canada, was legally permitted to leave the country with his two sons and two daughters, but a warrant was issued when he failed to return by August 21 as ordered by the court.  

Azer's ex-wife, Alison Azer, told the press she has not heard from him or the children in 14 days. The couple separated three years ago and have shared custody of the children.

"I'm living a nightmare," Alison Azer told the Canadian press. "I just felt something in [my children’s] voices. It didn't sound right. I asked them to call me and I have never heard from them again."

Azer’s humanitarian work frequently took him to northern Iraq, where he was well-known as an advocate for refugees. In 2007, Azer founded the International Society for Peace and Human Rights, a group that has sent staff and medical supplies to the camps in Turkey and northern Iraq.

“A Middle Eastern man can be easily and quickly stereotyped in the Western media. We need to hear both sides of the story before we jump to conclusions. Dr Azer is a respected man in the community. I hope he and the children are okay,” said Ava Homa, freelance journalist who interviewed Azer for Rudaw earlier this year.  



Azer is a well-known figure in Canada's Kurdish community and he was featured in a promotional video produced by the office of Prime Minister's Stephen Harper.

"The accusation of abduction is coming from Azar’s ex-wife who previously accused humanitarian doctor of terrorism. It took the court several years to realize that was a baseless accusation,” said a source, on condition of anonymity, who is close to the Azer family.

The source said the charges of abduction were made without reliable information. 

“You can’t accuse a prominent humanitarian doctor, who put his life on spike several times to treat wounded victims in unsafe and insecure countries, just because his ex-wife says so,” said the source. "It's true that he has not returned his children on the date that he was supposed to but it's too soon to launch such a groundless accusation."  

Alison Azer said she fears her ex-husband has taken their children to either Iraq or Iran. She has raised over $40,000 from a social media campaign she launched to bring her children home.

"I am so scared for my children and I have been so scared for three years," she said.

The children are daughters Rojevahn, 9, and Sharvahn, 11, and sons Meitan, 3, and Dersim, 7.

In his last interview with Rudaw, Azar mentioned that he is campaigning to build a hospital in war-torn city of Kobani, in the ethnically Kurdish area of Rojava in northeastern Syria.

Twenty-five years ago, Azer, an Iranian-Kurd, lived in a refugee camp in Iraq during the 1989-88 war with Iran. In 1994, he arrived in Canada and continued his education in Edmonton, Alberta, where he received his doctorate in medicine. 


Comments

 
Data pager
Previous
Page size:
PageSizeComboBox
select
Carl | 28/8/2015
This is world news?
Hoshyar Zaxoy | 28/8/2015
Sadly family relations in the west are much weaker than Kurdistan, yet many rush towards western culture only to realise the difference too late. My sympathy to the family and specially the children and wish them a reunion.
yad | 28/8/2015
Was it news that has been published by Rudaw, instead of focusing those crisis which are having in South Kurdistan like salary, water, jobless, and many others. If you know peoples pocket is empty despite of being near to Eid and opening of school, so much regret to our leader who think about their selves who will be president next.
Sherwan Kurdisan | 28/8/2015
I wonder if Turkey has anything to do with it
Sherwan Kurdistan | 28/8/2015
this sounds like a Saudi Arabia story. If the doctor is in kurdistan, they should arrest him and send his kids back to Canada. We are not Arabs to kidnap kids. This doctor is acting selfish and not thinking about Kurdish reputation.
8035 Views

Be Part of Your Rudaw!

Share your stories, photos and videos with Rudaw, and quite possibly the world.

What You Say

Argushi, USA | 7/20/2017 1:23:55 AM
Wow, how can Mr. Abadi say that kurds are first-class citizens in Iraq. The kurds can see that is not true and the world should see that also and...
LOYALTY | 7/20/2017 5:26:03 AM
Barzani is the founder of the Kurdish State . He deserves our loyalty .
Barzani: Gone are the days when Iraqis could use threatening language
| 19 hours ago | (9)
Yassir Fekaiki
Yassir Fekaiki | 7/19/2017 10:02:37 PM
The political Rulers of the KRG likely to owe the Kurdish population and the rest of Iraq trillions if investigations into the missing billions and...
Go ahead | 7/20/2017 5:22:24 AM
No backing on theses compensations .Go ahead, brave KRG .
Erbil tallying billions in debts, compensation Baghdad owes Kurdistan
| 15 hours ago | (3)
Adam | 6/16/2017 10:59:32 PM
Go Mr president we are all behind you
Dan | 7/20/2017 1:46:08 AM
If the Iraqi government is democratic and believes in democracy for all, why they would deny it for us, the Kurds. Our freedom is not from referendum...
Masoud Barzani: I was born for independence; referendum is binding
| 16/6/2017 | (12)
A Kurd in exile | 7/20/2017 12:44:02 AM
This is a good news! I am glad to hear it! Thank you President Barzani!
Argushi, USA | 7/20/2017 1:37:38 AM
All the kurds around the world should see that Barzani is asking for referendum for kurds and kurdistan and NOT KDP.
Kurdistan to hold parliamentary, presidential elections November 1
| 22 hours ago | (4)

Elsewhere on Rudaw

On display: Kurdish man showcases God's gift of art in diaspora 2 hours ago |

On display: Kurdish man showcases God's gift of art in diaspora

He’s painted many popular Kurdish icons more
Erbil tallying billions in debts, compensation Baghdad owes Kurdistan 15 hours ago | (3)

Erbil tallying billions in debts, compensation Baghdad owes Kurdistan

Erbil to prepare a dossier in preparations for more
0.235 seconds