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Inside Story
Will Turkey extradite Iraqi fugitive leader?
We ask if Tariq al-Hashimi's trial is political and what repercussions it will set off in an already volatile region.
Last Modified: 11 May 2012 06:43

"It is purely and squarely within the court case. There are 150 charges with confession and material evidence and drug codes...If I was him I would come back to Baghdad and face the trial and embarrass those who are politically motivated in charging him with serious charges."

- Muwaffak Al Rubaiee, a former Iraqi national security advisor

Interpol has issued a "red notice" for Tariq al-Hashimi, the Iraqi vice-president who is suspected of orchestrating terrorist attacks in the country.

In theory, the Interpol notice would limit al-Hashimi's ability to travel abroad and call for member countries to extradite him to Iraq.

But Turkey, the country which has hosted al-Hashimi since he fled Iraq, says it will not comply with an extradition order.

Al-Hashimi asserts that the case against him is bogus and politically motivated.

For its part, Turkey says it supports al-Hashimi and will provide him with all the support he requires. The case threatens to complicate Turkey and Iraq's already tense relationship.

"The Turkish side has had increased verbal confrontation with the al-Maliki government…the first time in the last seven years the Turks and Iraqis have been exchanging hard words at the level of prime minister."

- Huseyin Bagci, a political analyst

So what will the consequences of Turkey's decision be in Iraq and the wider area?

Is al-Hashimi's trial political or criminal? And what are its repercussions in an already volatile region?

Joining presenter Jane Dutton on Inside Story to discuss these issues are guests: Muwaffak Al Rubaiee, a former Iraqi national security advisor; Huseyin Bagci, a political analyst and a professor at the Middle East Technical University in Ankara; and Mark Taylor, an international criminal law expert.

"The red notice is always issued by Interpol after a review of whether or not there has been an investigation and due process in the country making the request… Interpol does so on the basis of that very narrow and rigid definition to avoid the interference of political interest."

- Mark Taylor, an international criminal law expert


AN INTERPOL "RED NOTICE":

The memorandum called "Red Notice" gives a regional and international alert to all the agency's 190 member countries. The notice requested by Iraqi authorities against Tariq al-Hashimi will restrict his ability to travel and cross international borders, and help the national police forces of Interpol member countries locate and arrest him or file a formal request for extradition. However Interpol does not have the authority to issue arrest warrants in the formal sense of the word, as this is the domain of the sovereign member states.

Source:
Al Jazeera
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