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Rudaw

Kurdistan

Sweden Inquiry for Asylum Seekers Suspected in Kurdish Genocide

By Rudaw 1/1/2014
Sources tell Rudaw that all three suspects are currently under Swedish police surveillance as their claims for asylum are investigated. They have been identified only as M.M.A, K.M. Abid and J.M. Khalaf.
Sources tell Rudaw that all three suspects are currently under Swedish police surveillance as their claims for asylum are investigated. They have been identified only as M.M.A, K.M. Abid and J.M. Khalaf.

STOCKHOLM, Sweden – Sweden is investigating at least five Iraqi asylum seekers and seeking help from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), following suspicions they may have been involved in genocide against the Kurds under Saddam Hussein.

Sources say that the government in Stockholm has assigned several envoys to coordinate with security institutions in the KRG to obtain information about the suspects, three of whom were allegedly senior members of Saddam’s Ba’ath party.

Sources tell Rudaw that all three suspects are currently under Swedish police surveillance as their claims for asylum are investigated. They have been identified only as M.M.A, K.M. Abid and J.M. Khalaf.

One of them was allegedly deputy director of Kirkuk security from 1987 to 1993 and has already confessed to involvement in arrests and torture. He is the most prominent suspect and, according to Swedish intelligence, “might have been involved in the killing of tens of people.”

Another is suspected of a hand in the Anfal campaign against the Kurds and was a close deputy of Ali Hassan Majeed, who was known as “Chemical Ali” for masterminding the March 1988 poison gas attack on the town of Halabja, which killed some 5,000 innocent Kurds.

According to information from Swedish immigration, among the three top suspects another was a nuclear scientist who worked on chemical weapons and has proven he was one of the Iraqis involved in negotiations in the 1990s with UN weapons inspectors.

The scientist, identified as Kemal, is not implicated in the chemical weapons crimes. He has used his history to strengthen the asylum application for himself and his family. Kemal has applied for asylum in Sweden, claiming that his life would be in danger in Iraq due to his Ba’athist background and involvement in Iraq’s chemical weapons program.

The Swedish government has been encouraged to investigate Iraqi immigrants or asylum seekers for crimes against the Kurds, following the international acclaim that came after a Swedish court passed a life sentence against a Swedish citizen of Rwandan origin for the 1994 Rwandan genocide.

In addition, Sweden prides itself for its commitment to the principles of human rights.

“It is hard for Sweden to let killers walk freely on our streets,” a Swedish police officer said.

S. Kirkuki, one of the envoys acting for the Swedish government in seeking KRG cooperation, said that officials in Erbil were taking the cases very seriously.

“I have traveled to Kurdistan in order to make contacts with the KRG. Although I have not received any concrete response yet, the KRG and officials are taking the case very seriously,” he said.

“Routine might delay our work but the KRG officials are asking for formal contacts,” he added.  

Kenet Veding, director of the War Crime Commission at the Swedish police, said that no efforts would be spared to uncover the history of the suspects because, “Without any evidence we can’t even arrest them.”

Eva Fred, an expert in genocide and director of international relations at the Swedish Office for Contemporary History, valued the role of the Swedish government in investigating suspects for war crimes against the Kurds.

“Our success in the case of Rwanda has had a positive impact on this case. It is very important for Kurds that the KRG plays an active role in this dossier.”

But a former KRG diplomat said it would be more helpful if the genocide cases were initiated in Baghdad. “Baghdad is more important than Europe for us,” he said.   

“Recognition of these dossiers by Baghdad will be the base for international institutions, and within this framework a country like Sweden can work on it,” he explained.

Comments

 
KIM | 1/1/2014
Go after companies and governments who supplied dictator Saddam with WMD. And keep an eye on Baghdad to ensure it is not supplied again.
Aram | 1/1/2014
Since Sweden is a liberal country they would never hand them in too Iraqi or Kurdish police - that means that they're going to live the rest of their life in Swedish 5-star prison with flat TV's and big sofas.
Azzat Othman | 2/1/2014
I hope the rest of Europe do the same and find these murderers who committed crime against innocent people, there are plenty of these murderers running around Arab countries today, can not for the day where the hand of the Kurds will reach them and bring them to justice. Thank you Sweden.
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