Saturday, 03 October 2015 03:30

Kurdistan Region Presidency issued the following statement:

In the campaign against ISIS terrorists, the Kurdistan Peshmerga have been a main force in the fight against this organization on the ground, and they have been able to secure major victories against them. In this campaign, the Kurdistan Region is a key partner in the US-led international coalition in Iraq.

The Kurdistan Region is grateful to any country or side that is prepared to assist the Peshmerga in the fight against ISIS, and it would welcome Russian assistance. Global efforts to defeat ISIS terrorists would be more effective if there is cooperation and coordination between the US-led international coalition and Russia.

Saturday, 26 September 2015 03:30

The Hague, The Netherlands (dfr.gov.krd) Today Head of the KRG Department of Foreign Relations Minister Falah Mustafa, together with two Yezidi NGOs, submitted a comprehensive report to the office of the ICC chief prosecutor in the Hague regarding the ISIS genocide against the Yezidis. This comes as a follow-up to previous efforts, and this detailed report provides further information.

The delegation delivered the detailed report to the chief prosecutor's office for analysis, with the hope that the ICC will open a preliminary investigation into these crimes on the basis of this supplemental report.

Despite the fact that Iraq is not an ICC member state, the court does have jurisdiction over the activities of ICC member state nationals wherever they may commit crimes. It is hoped that this report (the redacted version is linked below) will prompt the ICC to commence its preliminary investigation by demonstrating that the international court has jurisdiction, due to the large number and heinous nature of the crimes perpetrated by ISIS foreign fighters who are nationals of ICC member states.

Minister Mustafa said, "The KRG fully supports the prospect of an ICC investigation, and we know that Yezidis rightly demand justice. The peaceful Yezidi community was deliberately and brutally targeted by ISIS, and the international community has a responsibility to ensure that this genocide is recognized. Now that the evidence is there, it is the time for international legal bodies to play their roles and conduct appropriate investigations." He added, "As a matter of principle, the KRG seeks justice and recognition so that these crimes are properly documented, victims are compensated, and genocide is not repeated.”

Meeting Dutch Foreign Minister

As part of his visit to the Netherlands, the Head of the KRG Department of Foreign Relations met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, Mr Bert Koenders in the Hague to discuss bilateral ties as well as recent military and humanitarian developments.

Minister Mustafa gave an overview of the role of the Kurdistan Region in fighting the ISIS terrorists and the situation and the needs of the Syrian refugees and Iraqi displaced people in the Kurdistan Region.

Reiterating KRG’s commitment to continue the fight against terrorists and to carry on its open door policy towards refugees and displaced people, the KRG Minister called for continued international support.

He stated that the scale and magnitude of the challenges are beyond the capabilities of the KRG; the challenges have placed an incredible burden on the government and the people of the Kurdistan Region. The Minister thanked the Dutch government for providing humanitarian and military support to Kurdistan Region and stressed the need to receive further and continued support from the international community.

Minister Koenders highly spoke of the role of Kurdistan Region in the fight against ISIS terrorists and in caring for Syrian refugees and Iraqi displaced people. The Dutch Minister reiterated the commitment of his government to continue supporting Kurdistan at both humanitarian and military levels.

Both Ministers discussed bilateral ties and areas of potential cooperation in order to increase economic and investment cooperation.

Minister Mustafa also briefed Minister Koenders on the KRG’s efforts to gain international recognition for the crimes committed by the ISIS terrorists against the Yezidi Kurds and other components in the Kurdistan Region and called for moral, legal and political support of the Dutch government. Minister Koenders expressed the readiness of his government to support such efforts and said that the perpetrators of such crimes must be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Saturday, 12 September 2015 04:30

Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani today welcomed Australia’s new Ambassador to Iraq, Christopher Langman. The President and the Australian Ambassador reviewed the fight against ISIS, including Australian contribution in air support to peshmerga, political and security developments in the country, and the situation of IDPs and refugees in Kurdistan.

Ambassador Langman paid tribute to the bravery and sacrifices of the peshmerga forces in the fight against ISIS, and reiterated his country’s commitment to continue to support the peshmerga forces as part of the international coalition against ISIS.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015 04:30

Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani today met with US Ambassador to Iraq Stuart Jones, US Presidential Deputy Special Envoy to the Global Coalition to Counter ISIS Brett McGurk, and senior US military generals to discuss the status of the fight against ISIS. 

They discussed the ongoing efforts to defeat ISIS in both Iraq and in Syria and preparation for the liberation of Mosul, including cooperation and coordination among the peshmerga, the Iraqi, and the coalition forces.
They also discussed the political developments in the country and relations between Erbil and Baghdad.

Thursday, 17 September 2015 04:30

Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq (cabinet.gov.krd) - Kurdistan Region Prime Minister, Nechirvan Barzani, yesterday received, US Ambassador to Iraq Stuart E. Jones, and Deputy Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIS, Brett McGurk, and their accompanying delegation.

The two sides discussed the security situation in Iraq in general and Kurdistan Region in particular, and the recent developments in the war against Islamic State terrorist organisation, ISIS.

The delegation reiterated the US military support to Peshmerga forces, stressing on coordination between the United States, Kurdistan Regional Government, KRG, and Iraqi Federal Government.

Regarding the Kurdistan Region presidency issue, the US delegation expressed its support for continuation of the talks among the Kurdistan Region political parties, urging the need to put the war against ISIS as the first priority of the Region at this moment. They expressed their hope that Kurdistan Region Political parties will soon reach an agreement.

Prime Minister Barzani expressed his gratitude to Ambassador Stuart Jones, and the United States army in Iraq for their support to the Kurdistan Region. He said, however, for the next phases in the war against ISIS, with the aim to liberating the areas under ISIS control, a comprehensive plan, with coalition forces support, particularly US army’s support, for Peshmerga and Iraqi forces, are needed. 

On the Kurdistan Region presidency issue, Prime Minister Barzani pointed out that the talks among Kurdistan Region political parties are going on seriously to reach a suitable solution in the interest of the people and the stability of the Region. He stressed that Kurdistan Region President, Masoud Barzani and the Peshmerga forces give priority to the war against ISIS.

The talks between KRG and the Iraqi Federal Government on finding an appropriate solution for the outstanding issues, the situation in the Middle East and neighbouring countries were also discussed in the meeting. 

Friday, 18 September 2015 04:30

Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq (cabinet.gov.krd) - Erbil Governor, Nawzad Hadi, denied that accommodating the large number of internally displaced persons, IDPs, and refugees poses a security threat to the Kurdistan Region.

In an interview with Kurdistan Regional Government, KRG, website, the Governor of Erbil said, “The security officials have been examining security challenges, and terrorist acts and crimes committed in the past. Based on the cases investigated that have been referred to the courts, none were linked to IDPs.”

He stressed that “IDPs and refugees are in need for more assistance, and that they are not linked to security issues. Erbil is safe and secure, and there is no significant security concern.”

Erbil Governor denied allegations, suggesting that the presence of IDPs and refugees in Erbil may lead to security issues.

The Kurdistan Regional Government works closely with local and international organisations to provide basic necessities to refugees and internally displaced persons, who have been threatened by the Islamic State terrorist organisation, ISIS and have sought safety in the Kurdistan Region.

Nawzad Hadi said the presence of the IDPs in the Kurdistan Region is temporary as the international coalition against ISIS is working to liberate areas currently under the control of terrorists.

He reiterated that accommodating and offering assistance to IDPs and refugees in the Kurdistan Region is a humanitarian act that has been acknowledged and appreciated by the international community.

Dibagah Camp

Speaking last week at the opening of Dibagah IDP camp, built by the Emirates Red Crescent, Erbil Governor said, this camp, which comprises one thousand units, is for IDPs from Makhmour District.

The camp includes Kurds and the Arabs mainly from Sultan Abdulla and nearby villages captured by ISIS. Some Arab citizens accommodated in the Dibaga camp are fighting ISIS alongside Peshmerga forces.

Erbil Governor said, “With the assistance of UN Agencies, the KRG has allocated a special budget for IDPs. The Dibagah camp is not the only project implemented by the Emirates Red Crescent. There are other projects including a camp in Bahraka District, and several other food and water distribution programs for IDPs.”

An estimated 1.8 million displaced people, mainly from Anbar and Mosul, including close to 250,000 Syrian refugees fled to the Kurdistan Region. This huge displacement occurred after the Syrian civil war began in 2011 and especially when ISIS overran a large part of Iraqi territory in 2014.

Monday, 31 August 2015 04:30

Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq (cabinet.gov.krd) - Kurdistan Region Prime Minister, Nechirvan Barzani received United Kingdom Government Cabinet Office Minister, Oliver Letwin and his accompanying delegation.

Mr. Letwin praised the role of the Peshmerga forces in their fight against Islamic State terrorist organization, ISIS, as well as the Region’s interior forces that have been able to protect security of Kurdistan citizens regardless their ethnic and religious background.

He reiterated his government’s support to the people, government and Peshmerga forces of Kurdistan Region particularly in the war against ISIS. He noted that the UK government values its relations with Kurdistan Region.

He also commended the Kurdistan Region for being able to accommodate and provide assistance to a large number of Internally displaced people, IDPs and refugees who have fled terrorist threats and sought safety in Kurdistan.

Prime Minister Barzani expressed his gratitude to the UK Government, which has been supporting Kurdistan Region since ISIS started its campaigns against the Kurdistan Region.

Prime Minister Barzani, meantime, noted that the people and government of Kurdistan Region expect further and continuous UK assistance particularly in providing Peshmerga forces with ammunitions, artillery and training.

He also stressed that Kurdistan Region needs continuous support from the international community, directly or through the United Nation agencies, in order to offer further assistance to the IDPs and refugees.

The two sides also discussed the political situation in Iraq and the relations between Erbil and Baghdad.

Tuesday, 01 September 2015 04:30

Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq (cabinet.gov.krd) - Kurdistan Region Prime Minster, Nechirvan Barzani, yesterday received the former chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, ICC, Mr. Luis Moreno-Ocampo and his accompanying delegation.

The two sides discussed the situation of the victims of terrorist attacks, particularly the Yazidi Kurds who last year were subject to barbaric attacks by Islamic State terrorist organisation, ISIS.

They highlighted the efforts exerted by Kurdistan Regional Government, KRG, to obtain international recognition of the crimes committed against Yazidi Kurds as genocide.

Prime Minister Barzani briefed the delegation about the tasks undertaken by KRG Ministry of Martyrs and Anfal Affairs in this regard.

Mr. Luis Moreno-Ocampo expressed his sympathy to the Yazidi community, the people and the government of Kurdistan Region, reiterating his support to the KRG efforts in obtaining genocide recognition of the Yazidi case, considering it as a humanitarian case which is important for the entire humanity.

Prime Minister Barzani expressed his and his government’s gratitude to Mr. Moreno-Ocampo for his support. He noted that the KRG will continue its efforts to liberate the Yazidi men and women who still are remained captive at the hands of ISIS.

Prime Minister Barzani meanwhile thanked the NGO’s and aid agencies for offering assistance to the victims of terrorism.

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