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Governor of Iraqi-Kurdish Erbil province dies of coronavirus aged-42

Firsat Sofi died of coronavirus [Twitter]

Date of publication: 19 November, 2020

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Firsat Sofi, Erbil's governor died of coronavirus at the age of 42.

The governor of the Iraqi-Kurdish province of Erbil, Firsat Sofi, died of Covid-19 on Wednesday at a hospital in Turkey after weeks of fighting the deadly virus.

Sofi, aged 42, tested positive for coronavirus on 19 October, but two weeks later his condition deteriorated and was flown to the Turkish capital city of Ankara to be treated at the Memorial Hospital's intensive care unit.

He succumbed to the disease in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

Sofi's body will be flown back to Erbil for the ritual burial on Thursday.

He held a PhD in International Law from Salahaddin University, represented the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) in the regional parliament from 2013 to 2017.

The Iraqi-Kurdish leadership, and thousands of others, mourned Sofi's passing.

Iraqi-Kurdistan's President Nechirvan Barzani offered his condolences to the late governor's family, friends, and the people of Erbil.

Barzani described Sofi as "an active parliamentarian and competent legal expert who had a significant role in the Kurdistan Parliament".

"His professionalism, integrity, patriotism, and devotion has made Dr. Firsat much loved by the public," Barzani added in a statement sent to Rudaw.

The politician is remembered by many for rising through the KDP's ranks through sheer determination and ability, despite his humble beginnings. He was a legal advisor at the Kurdistan Region Presidency's office.

"
We are very sad to learn of the passing of Dr Firsat Sofi, Erbil Governor. We send our condolences to his family and the people of the Kurdistan Region," the UK Consulate tweeted.

Before becoming a parliamentarian, Sofi taught law at Erbil's Polytechnic University. He leaves behind a wife, two daughters, and two sons.

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