Sunday, 14 September 2014 22:30

Erbil, Kurdistan, Iraq (KRG.org) – The Kurdistan Regional Government urges the participants of tomorrow’s international conference held in Paris, which focuses on Iraq’s security, the incidents in Sinjar, and the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians, to seriously address the situation of the displaced and assist in providing aid to the great number of internally displaced Iraqis, in addition to discussing political and military matters.

The KRG calls upon Arab states to fulfill their humanitarian duties in aiding the displaced, the majority of whom are Yezidi Kurds, Christians, and Sunni Arabs from the Ninevah plains.

The KRG calls upon the international community to come forward and help the KRG in providing necessary aid to the displaced people that fled the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) terrorist attacks on Sinjar and the Ninevah plains and are taking refuge in the Kurdistan Region in general and Duhok province in particular. This is especially important because the winter season will soon begin.

The KRG plea for action comes from the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, composed of ministers and other officials, after discussion regarding the humanitarian situation of the displaced people from Sinjar and the Ninevah plains in order to follow-up their needs and resolve related issues. Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani chaired the meeting.

A field report regarding the humanitarian situation of the displaced was presented during the meeting. It focused on educational issues and the schools in the Duhok province currently sheltering the displaced families. In the meeting, it was decided to begin building camps in order to vacate the schools so that the academic year could begin. It was also decided that the Duhok Governor's office and related provincial institutions should be supported to enable them to overcome shortcomings. A similar meeting will soon take place in Duhok to carefully analyse the situation with related officials and institutions and to consider their views.

In the meeting it was also decided that relevant KRG institutions should fully coordinate and follow-up with international organisations. In addition, a KRG delegation will visit Baghdad and meet with federal authorities about the situation of displaced people, because the humanitarian crisis currently unfolding is beyond the capacity of the Kurdistan Region. The Iraqi Government should therefore fulfill its legal and constitutional duty.

Finally the KRG extended its commendation and gratitude to the people of Kurdistan, and especially the people of the Duhok governorate, for all the aid and support they have been providing to the displaced from the earliest days of the crisis.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Saturday, 13 September 2014 09:00

Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani welcomed French President François Hollande in Erbil on Friday.

After his arrival in Erbil, President Hollande and President Barzani visited a refugee camp in a district in Erbil, and later held a meeting. President Hollande, the first foreign head of state to visit Erbil, was accopamnbied by Foreign Minister Laurent Fabios and Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian.

Following their meeting with President Barzani and KRG officials, the two Presidents held a joint press conference.

President Hollande said France would continue to provide humanitarian and military aid to Kurdistan in its fight against ISIS terrorists. He said that as the Kurdistan Region is at the forefront of the fight against ISIS terrorists, a delegation from Kurdistan is invited to attend an international conference, due in Paris next week, designed to coordinate international effort to confront threat posed by ISIS terrorists.

The French President also highly praised the role of the Peshmerga forces in this fight and pledged increased military aid to the Peshmerga forces. 

President Barzani described the visit to Kurdistan by President Hollande as historic and thanked the president and people of France for standing by the people of Kurdistan in their hour of need, saying that France was first EU country to come to the aid of Kurdistan in the fight against ISIS terrorists. He also added that thanks to the support by France and other countries, the Peshmrega forces are now taking the fight to ISIS and have the upper hand. President Barzani vowed that the Kurdistan Region would continue to fight until the ISIS terrorist group is uprooted and destroyed.


 

 

 

 

Wednesday, 03 September 2014 18:00

Erbil, Kurdistan, Iraq (DFR.krg.org) – François Fillon, former Prime Minister of France, visited the KRG Department of Foreign Relations yesterday to express solidarity with the people of Kurdistan and the Kurdish Peshmerga forces.

  
The former Prime Minister appreciated the role of the Peshmerga forces in fighting a terrorist organization that poses a serious threat to international peace and security.
 
Regarding French support for Kurdistan, Mr Fillon said, “France’s decision to support Kurdistan was the right decision but the support needs to be expanded and expedited, because the Islamic State is not only a regional but also an international threat as well. It is a threat against civilization.”
 
Minister Mustafa thanked Mr Fillon for his visit and expression of support at this important time. He said, “At critical stages in our recent history the people, government, and leadership of France have been supportive of Kurdistan. This was true in 1991 and it is true today, and we are very grateful for the military and humanitarian aid.” He added, “The KRG is determined to fight and defeat the terrorists, but continuous support from the international community is absolutely necessary.” The Minister indicated that the American decision to commence air strikes was a critical turning point in the fight against the militants, also lauding French leadership for responding immediately to the crisis and raising international awareness.
  
Former Prime Minister Fillon praised the KRG for providing a safe haven and humanitarian assistance to the hundreds of thousands of displaced members of religious minorities who have taken shelter in Kurdistan. The KRG has called upon the international community to urgently assist in providing for the basic needs of approximately 1.4 million Iraqi IDPs and Syrian refugees currently sheltered in Kurdistan.
 
Minister Mustafa emphasized the necessity of humanitarian and military assistance to support the IDPs and refugees in Kurdistan and also prevent terrorist militants from attacking more civilians. He asked for the support of France in launching an international humanitarian conference in Kurdistan to support the KRG in its efforts to provide for displaced people and refugees, and to advocate for international recognition of the terrorist attacks against the Yezidis, Christian, and other minority groups as acts of genocide. The Minister also welcomed the French initiative to arrange an international conference on Iraq and hoped that the conference would result in more humanitarian and military assistance for the Kurdistan Region. 
 
 
Regarding minority communities, Minister Mustafa said, “The KRG is determined to protect all religious and ethnic minority groups. Our people and government are proud of Kurdistan’s reputation as a model of peaceful coexistence and tolerance in the Middle East.”
 
In the meeting, both sides highlighted the importance of an inclusive and democratic federal government in Baghdad as well as opportunities for French firms and investors in Kurdistan’s free market economy.
 
Several Members of the French Parliament, former French Ministers, and French Consul General Alain Guépratte attended the meeting, as did Deputy Head of the KRG Department of Foreign Relations Karwan Jamal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wednesday, 27 August 2014 04:30

President Masoud Barzani met with the visiting Iranian Foreign Minister Mohamad Javad Zarif in Erbil on Tuesday. The two discussed the fight against ISIS terrorists, government formation process in Baghdad and other issues of mutual concern.

Foreign Minister Zarif stated that the Islamic Republic would always stand by the Iraqis, including the people of Kurdistan, against terrorism, adding that the terrorism is a threat everyone, be it Shia, Sunni or Kurds. He further added that it is in the interest of Iran to fight terrorism.

President Barzani expressed his gratitude to the Islamic Republic for their support in the fight against terrorism, and hope that relations between the two sides would continue to grow. He added that terrorism is a threat to all, and that cooperation is needed by all sides to address this threat.

On government formation in Baghdad, Mr Zarif expressed his country’s desire to see an inclusive government formed in Baghdad and urged the Kurds to actively play their role to help form such a government. He said the Islamic Republic would support any agreement reached between Baghdad and Erbil.

President Barzani stated that he supports the efforts to form an inclusive government in Baghdad, adding that there must be guarantees regarding any agreements reached between Erbil and Baghdad.

 

 

 

 

Wednesday, 20 August 2014 09:00

Italy’s Prime Minister Matteo Renzi arrived in Erbil today and met with President Masoud Barzani and Prime Minster Nechirvan Barzani in Erbil today. He also visited a refugee camp near Erbil which is home to a large number of IDPs from Ninawa province.

In his meeting with the KRG leadership, Prime Minister Renzi expressed his country’s support for the KRG in its fight against ISIS terrorism and stated that Italy would provide both humanitarian and military aid to the KRG. He added that there is a consensus in the EU that both humanitarian and military aid must be provided for the KRG. On the fight against terrorism, Prime Minister Renzi said that Italy stands by the KRG in this fight, as ISIS is a threat to Italy and not just to Kurdistan.

President Barzani expressed his gratitude to the people and government of Italy for their show of solidary and offer of support and said that this public support gives the people of Kurdistan more hope and strength in the face of terrorism.

In their meeting, they also discussed the plight of the hundreds of thousands of IDPs and refugees who have sought refuge in Kurdistan. President Barzani said that the KRG would spare no efforts to tend to the needs of the IDPs. He added that Kurdistan is proud to be a place where people of different religious and ethnic backgrounds live side by side in peace and that the KRG would do whatever it takes to protect this tradition.

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, 19 August 2014 09:00

During his meeting with (Lancs Mackie) British Consul in Erbil, who visited the parliament Dr. Yousef Mohammad Sadiq the president of the Kurdistan Parliament stressed on the need of the UK Nations contribution in providing assistance to the Kurdistan Regional Government in this circumstance, he also hopes that the British government offer humanitarian aid to displaced and the British government will be pioneer to provide such assistance.

The President of the Parliament of Kurdistan during the meeting talked  About the humanitarian situation through which displaced people from different areas faced, nowadays.

The security situation of the areas and the conditions of the Peshmerga forces that address for terrorists witnessed, that humanitarian conditions of the displaced are not good and they need a helping hand and provide the basic necessities for living and we hope that the British government help in providing services to them, such as humanitarian aid and military, logistical aid to the Peshmerga to protect Kurdistan from the terrorist.

For his part, Lancs Mackie British Consul in Erbil thanks  President of Kurdistan Parliament on the information that he provided during the meeting about the current situation in the region and the difficult conditions for the displaced of Kurdistan and information about the conditions of the Peshmerga forces, describing the activities of the Kurdistan Parliament and interest in the conditions of the displaced terms, stressing that his country supports Kurdistan in all circumstances and that the British government will contribute humanitarian assistance to the displaced, hoping to end the outstanding problems between the Kurdistan Regional Government and the central government in Baghdad.

 

 

 

 

Sunday, 17 August 2014 09:00

Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani welcomed Germany’s Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier in Erbil on Saturday. In a press conference following their meeting, Mr. Steinmeier expressed Germany’s support for the KRG in its fight against terrorism and commended the KRG for hosting large numbers of IDPs from Mosul who have sought refuge in Kurdistan. He added that Germany would continue to provide humanitarian aid to the IDPs, reiterating that his country would do whatever it can to help the KRG cope with the refugees.


President Barzani hailed Mr. Steinmeier visit to Kurdistan and described it as tremendous support for the people of Kurdistan. He added that the atrocities committed against the Yezidis and Christian minorities in the Ninawa province, were crimes committed against all the people of Kurdistan and that the KRG would come out of this victorious.

 

 

 

 

Thursday, 14 August 2014 18:00

Erbil, Kurdistan, Iraq (KRG.org) – Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani today received Cardinal Fernando Filoni, special envoy of Pope Francis, and his accompanying delegation.

The envoy conveyed the Pope’s greetings and gratitude to Prime Minister Barzani for the help and support provided by the government and the people of the Kurdistan Region to displaced Christians. Most of the Christians came from the Ninevah plains and Mosul. The delegation also applauded the KRG effort to protect all other internally displaced people fleeing terrorists.

Prime Minister Barzani reiterated that it is the duty of the KRG to protect and support displaced Christians, Yezidis, and other religious and ethnic groups seeking refuge in the Kurdistan Region. He said he would mobilise all resources to support them; however, given the number of refugees and displaced people, the KRG cannot provide adequate assistance. It is therefore necessary for the Iraqi government and the international community to promptly provide humanitarian assistance.

The Prime Minister added that Christians, Yezidis, and other minority groups are natives of the area, with historic roots in the region. They need physical protection from the terrorists, not only verbal support, because the terrorists target churches, mosques, and shrines. Prime Minister Barzani noted that the terrorists now constitute an army and include individuals from all over the world, so the international community, in coordination with the KRG and the Government of Iraq, must confront them together.

In the meeting both sides agreed upon the importance of international protection for all ethnic and religious communities native to the Ninevah plains, including Christians, Yezidis, Shia, Sunnis, Turkmen, Shabak, Kurds, and Arabs. Both parties agreed to exert pressure at the global level to assure international protection from the terrorists.

The Cardinal requested the KRG to identify solutions for housing and accommodation for the displaced, as well as an arrangement for students so that they would not lose an academic year. The Prime Minister promised to follow-up on this request and coordinate with relevant KRG authorities to implement appropriate measures.

During the meeting it was decided to establish a committee in Erbil between KRG authorities and relevant Christian community leaders to respond to the immediate needs of displaced people, with similar committees to be formed in other provinces.

The delegation stated that Christians will never forget the support provided by the government and the people of Kurdistan, and that history will record these actions. Prime Minister Barzani urged the delegation to mobilise the Vatican’s international influence to support the Kurdistan Region and the displaced families it is hosting.

 

 

 

 

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