Kurdish Syrian ex-leader arrested in Prague

ANI | Updated: Feb 25, 2018 22:32 IST

Damascus [Syria], Feb 25 (ANI): Prominent former leader of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria, Salih Muslim, has been arrested in Prague, according to Turkish security officials and the PYD.

The party officials confirmed his arrest to Al Jazeera over the phone, and said that it was unclear if he would be handed over to Turkey.

Turkey considers PYD in Syria and its armed wing, the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), to be "terrorist groups" with ties to the banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

The PKK has waged decades-long armed fight against the Turkish state, which has killed tens of thousands of people.

The arrest came after Turkey called on the Czech Republic to arrest the former co-leader and sent warrants for his arrest to Prague, according to Turkish officials.

Moreover, the Turkish interior ministry had offered a bounty of nearly USD 1 million on Muslim, who is listed as one of the "most wanted terrorists" in Turkey.

Muslim will be produced before a court, the officials said, adding that Czech authorities would decide whether or not, he would be remanded in custody.

Further, Czech authorities have asked Turkey to submit the necessary documents for Muslim's extradition, according to Anadolu.

Turkey, along with the Free Syrian Army (FSA) rebel group, had launched an air and ground offensive into Afrin, in the northwest of Syria last month, to vanquish the US-backed YPG fighters near its border. (ANI)

iocl