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Kurdish Intel Release 45 Prisoners in Kirkuk
Fact-Finding Committee Complains of Uncooperative Ministries
By SLOGGER NETWORK 05/22/2009 7:22 PM ET
Kurdish intelligence forces operating in Kirkuk Province released 45 detainees on Sunday, local sources say. The Asayish, as the intel agency that operates under the command of Iraq’s two major Kurdish parties is known, released the 45 after finding that there was no evidence to link them to alleged criminal activity in the province.

As IraqSlogger has reported earlier, Arab and Turkmen citizens of Kirkuk have alleged that Kurdish intelligence and militia organizations in the province have targeted their communities for arrests, with many detainees allegedly removed to nearby provinces under Kurdish control, where conditions are said to be poor and detainees are said to be tortured.

Residents say that the Asayish forces conduct arrest sweeps in areas of Kirkuk after bombing attacks in the city, often sweeping up innocent people in the operations.

Fact-finding committee

A parliamentary fact-finding committee tasked with finding a solution to the political impasse in the disputed oil-rich province met with the provincial council of Kirkuk on Sunday, local sources said. The committee reportedly discussed the ethnic distribution of public-sector jobs in the province, affirming the quota of 32% of jobs to each of the Kurdish, Turkmen, and Arab communities, with the remaining four percent distributed to Christians.

The following day, Kirkuk Governor Abdul Rahman Mustafa met with members of the parliamentary committee, who reportedly told the governor that their committee faced obstacles in the various ministries, who allegedly fail to present documents and information when requested.

The parliamentary committee's report is due in June.

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