Jalal Talabani to visit Tehran soon

Jalal Talabani. Photo: AP/file
Jalal Talabani. Photo: AP/file
Jalal Talabani, leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and former Iraqi president, is due to visit Tehran soon on a friendly visit, according to a statement released by the party's media office.

(rudaw) -- He is due to depart from Sulaimani and will stay in Iran for a few days. The visit is at the invitation of Iranian officials.

The Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) representative in Tehran, Nazim Dabagh, told Rudaw he was “unaware that Mam Jalal will arrive in the Islamic Republic of Iran on a visit next week.”

Talabani's visit comes amid strained relations between Erbil and Tehran over Iranian shelling of armed Kurdish groups inside the Kurdistan Region's border and Iran's cutting the flow of a trans-border river, all in the shadow of the Kurdistan Region's independence aspirations and planned referendum.

While Talabani remains the official head of PUK, he has largely disappeared from the country's political scene since suffering a stroke in December 2012.

The PUK enjoys good relations with Iran.