After being found of wrongdoing by a committee from the Iraqi Interior Ministry, three policemen who were involved in the case of the teacher Muhammad Jabari, were put under arrest.
Coming from Baghdad, the committee arrived in Kirkuk today 16 July 2020 and started an investigation, a source within Kirkuk Police told KirkukNow.
The source stressed that “under the orders of the Interior Minister Uthman Ghanimi a high-level committee consisting of several officers, has arrived in Kirkuk today. They visited the office of the Kirkuk Police initially, then started investigation.”
By an order from the committee, three members of Kirkuk’s Qoriya police were put under arrest to be interrogated.
The source added: “The three members of police had the task of transferring the teacher Muhammad Jabari to the Qoriya police station and then taking him back to Kirkuk’s main hospital and handcuffing him to the bed of his wife.”
The committee will thoroughly study the case of the teacher
Major general Ali Muttashir, deputy chief of Kirkuk Police, told KirkukNow: “A committee from the Interior Ministry has come to Kirkuk and together with Kirkuk Police are investigating the incident. The committee will thoroughly study the case of the teacher and the results of their investigation will be more clear soon.”
At the same time, Kirkuk Police has started a separate investigation on its own.
On 13 July, a video footage was spread on social media in which Jabari (the teacher in question) appeared being handcuffed to a hospital bed on which his dead wife was still lying.
The wife of the teacher had died on the same day after contracting the COVID-19 virus.
The teacher had gotten into a scuffle with the hospital staff about the oxygen supplement for his wife. He told KirkukNow: “During the scuffle I broke a ventilator, which prompted the hospital staff to call the police, [who subsequently] handcuffed me to the bed on which my wife was lying.”
He added that the hospital staff had neglected his wife when she was in need of oxygen, and the lack of which was the cause of her death, he thinks.
She was dying in front of my eyes while I wasn’t able to do anything for her, because I was handcuffed
“I count the hospital [staff] as the culprit of my wife’s death. She was dying in front of my eyes while I wasn’t able to do anything for her, because I was handcuffed.”
The incident caused teachers and some Kirkuk residents to protest more than once.
Kurdistan Regional Government’s Ministry of Education also objected to the way the police had treated the teacher and stated that KRG’s Prime Minister will reimburse the hospital for the broken ventilator.
The teacher, Muhammad Jabari, is an employee of Kirkuk’s Kurdish Education Department which falls under Iraq’s Education Ministry.
Kirkuk’s Health Department has issued three separate statements on the issue. The interim director of the department told KirkukNow: “It was painful for me to see the video of Muhammad Jabari. We will punish all the irresponsible [staff members]. There is enough evidence, and we will make the investigations public.”