KRG’s ministry of Interior officials arrested in corruption probe

By Rudaw – 17 April 2016 – ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – A number of officials from the Kurdistan Region Government’s Ministry of Interior were arrested on Sunday under order of the court.A source from the Interior Ministry revealed to Rudaw that upon the order of a judge of the Kurdistan Commission of Integrity, a number of officials from the Interior Ministry’s Immigration Department were arrested on charges of corruption.

“Those arrested include the manager of the Sulaimani Immigration Department who has been charged with wasting money allocated for refugees,” said the source, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Now, upon the order of the court, those arrested have been released on bail until the day of their trial.”According to a statement issued by the judge, the manager of Sulaimani’s Immigration Department is suspended from his position pending the court proceedings.These arrests follow plans for reform announced by President Masoud Barzani to combat corruption in the Kurdistan Region. Barzani vowed a few months ago to fight corruption with the same determination the Peshmerga forces have battled Islamic State militants. Last Wednesday the head of the Kurdistan Region’s Central Bank, Adham Karim, and his deputy were arrested also on charges of corruption. Karim was taken into custody as part of a probe into an alleged illegal bond trading scheme that may have cost the cash-strapped government more than one billion dollars. The Kurdistan Region has been suffering financially since mid-2014, following  an economic crisis induced by low oil prices, putting renewed focus on corruption in the region.