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Talabani: German Hospital and Sunni Extremists

talabani: But the country's centrifugal forces have only accelerated since he was hospitalized nearly five years ago, as it has battled the Sunni extremists of the Islamic State group and faced growing demands for Kurdish independence, according to Toronto Star. Talabani suffered a stroke in 2012 and was moved to a German hospital later that year for treatment. Talabani was often seen as a unifying elder statesman who could soothe tempers among Iraq's Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds. He died Tuesday after his condition rapidly deteriorated, according to Marwan Talabani, a relative and senior official in the office of Talabani's son. The vote, which was led by his longtime Kurdish rival, regional President Masoud Barzani, is not expected to lead to Kurdish state anytime soon and has further isolated the small land-locked region. Read more Iraqi ban on flights to Kurdish capital goes into effect Article Continued Below Polls close on landmark Iraqi Kurd independence vote as Turkey threatens military intervention His death came days after the Kurds voted for independence, essentially rejecting the vision of a unified, multi-ethnic Iraq that he had championed in the chaotic years after the U.S.-led invasion. ( As reported in the news.