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US removes two Kurdish groups from terror blacklist

December 13, 2014 at 3:48 pm

The US Congress allowed two Kurdish groups to be removed from a terror blacklist under US immigration laws.

The move was part of a wider defense spending bill passed by the Senate on Friday, and expected to be signed into law by President Barack Obama.

Brett McGurk, the Obama administration’s deputy envoy for the anti-ISIL coalition, said that the “unfair designation” complicated efforts of some Kurds to visit the US.

“Congress has passed the NDAA w/a provision removing #PUK & #KDP from the list of designated organizations under U.S. immigration laws,” he tweeted using an acronym for the legislation that authorizes defense spending. “We are pleased to see it fixed.”

The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, or PUK, and Kurdistan Democratic Party, or KDP, are the two main Kurdish political parties in northern Iraq.