Deputy PM apologizes to students accused of disrespecting Kurdistan flag due to old video

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Deputy Prime Minister Qubad Talabani on Sunday apologized to students of universities who were accused of disrespecting Kurdistan flag by Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) officials after an old video went viral on social media.

“Instead of getting close to and understand students as the government, we bring an old video and accuse them of insulting the Kurdistan flag,” Talabani said during the the Gender Equality & Women’s Empowerment Strategies: The Case of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq conference held in Erbil.

Footage said to be nearly two years old went viral on social media showing cars driving over a Kurdistan flag.

KRG officials accused university students, who protested in Sulaimani last week against the suspension of their monthly stipends halted since 2015, of disrespecting the flag.

“Instead of looking for the truth of the video, we have made the students more angry at us. This mistake has passed not only on the government, including me, but also on the parliament,” Talabani said.

“The smallest thing that we can do now is to offer apology to the students in Sulaimani university and other universities who have been proud of the Kurdistan flag during the protests more than us,” he added.

“We apologize to you [students].”

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