DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Qatar has rejected Iraq’s request to hand over the nation’s fugitive Sunni vice president to face terror charges in Baghdad.
Khaled al-Attiyah, Qatar’s minister of state for international cooperation, says the Gulf nation will not extradite Tariq al-Hashemi because such a move would be contrary to diplomatic protocol.
Iraq on Monday asked Qatar to extradite al-Hashemi. The request will likely further strain ties between Shiite-led Iraq and Sunni Gulf Arab states.
Al-Hashemi is the top Sunni official in Iraq’s Shiite-led government, which issued a warrant for his arrest in December.
Al-Attiyah told reporters on Tuesday that Qatar will not hand him over because there is no “court verdict against him” and because al-Hashemi is a foreign official with diplomatic immunity.