Jalal Talabani in a coma

KURDISTAN TRIBUNE 19-12-2012 – Jalal Talabani, the Iraq president and leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), is seriously ill in a Baghdad hospital. It is reported that he had a stroke at around 3am local time and is now in a coma. Talabani, 79, has suffered from major health problems in recent years and was abroad for extended treatment earlier this year. Yesterday, PUK Politburo member Mula Bakhtiar told Lvinpress that he was against anyone in the party putting themselves forward to replace Talabani. However, if the PUK leader does not recover, there will inevitably be a fierce factional struggle for the control of the party and its plentiful resources. The main contending groups will be based around Talabani’s wife, Hero, the former Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) premier, Barham Salih, and the veteran Peshmerga leader, Kosrat Rasul