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Palacký University
05-31-2016, 15:02, Age: 6 y.

UP Alumnus Saved Lives, Died Fighting Islamists

By: Ivana Pustějovská, Velena Mazochová

A Kurdish doctor, an alumnus of Palacký University Olomouc, died in the north of Iraq while fighting the Islamic State. Dr Rezgar Siwayli Rashid fled Iraq years ago and graduated in Medicine in Olomouc.

“I can confirm that a doctor and brigade general who also had Czech citizenship fell near Mosul on the morning of May 29. He fled to former Czechoslovakia from Saddam Hussein’s regime,” stated the Czech Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Michaela Lagronová. As she added, he graduated at Palacký University in 1988.

“All war conflicts are tragic in their essence. The death of our alumnus Rezgar Siwayli Rashid demonstrates how the world today is interconnected and how a faraway war affects our immediate surroundings. General Dr Rashid, among other things, saved and treated the wounded in the front line, and Palacký University honours his memory,” said UP Rector Jaroslav Miller.

Another alumnus of the UP Faculty of Medicine, Imad Hamdanieh, who currently works as a gynaecologist in an Olomouc hospital, also remembers his former classmate. “We studied together – not in the same year, though, as he graduated a year after me – but I knew him well. His wife is Czech, they have a daughter, and after studies he even worked here for some time. It was a very nice and trustworthy person. As a Kurd, he was very engaged in the Kurdish issue. As a military doctor, he had sent several wounded soldiers to the Czech Republic. His mission was to support local health care and develop relationships with the Czech Republic,” said Imad Hamdanieh.

The case of Dr Rashid was described in detail by in an article by Markéta Kutilová and Lenka Klicperová (from the journal Lidé a země). “The fifty-eight-year-old colonel was a member of the Kurdish Peshmerga military forces and took part in a massive offensive against IS positions in the proximity of Mosul during the past weekend. Peshmerga managed to push the Islamists out of eight Kurdish villages and forced them to retreat. However, the IS fighters sent ten suicide car bombers against the Kurds in response to their offensive,” the two wrote. One of the victims of the suicide bombers was Dr Rashid.

More details in Czech HERE.

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Last update: 19. 09. 2012, Vladimír Kubák