Barzani: Kuwaiti-Kur­dish ties deep-rooted

Kur­dis­tan Pres­i­dent meets Kuwaiti jour­nal­ists

The Kurdish Globe - - FRONT PAGE -

Pres­i­dent of the Iraqi Kur­dis­tan re­gion Ma­soud Barzani stressed that Kuwait-Kur­dish re­la­tions are deep-rooted and Kur­dish lead­ers al­ways re­jected the abu­sive prac­tices of the Iraqi gov­ern­ments to­wards Kuwait be­fore 2003. Wel­com­ing a Kuwaiti me­dia del­e­ga­tion cur­rently vis­it­ing the re­gion at the Salahud­din Re­sort in Ir­bil, Barzani ex­pressed his hap­pi­ness at the visit and termed it a good ges­ture by ‘a group of highly ed­u­cated Kuwaiti elite’ who wish to have a closer look at the re­gion.

“Re­la­tions be­tween Kuwait and Kur­dis­tan re­gion are very strong and we have a lot in com­mon – as peo­ples, we both suf­fered from the Baath regime of Sad­dam Hus­sein. For three decades, the Kur­dish peo­ple went through what the Kuwaiti peo­ple suf­fered dur­ing the Iraqi in­va­sion,” he un­der­lined. Barzani also re­called that when the former Iraqi pres­i­dent Ab­dul Ka­reem Qas­sim erred against Kuwait in the 1960s, Mulla Mustafa Barzani, his fa­ther, re­jected and op­posed his claims. He also noted that he had al­ways felt closely re­lated to Kuwaiti politi­cians and has ut­most re­spect for HH the Amir.

Barzani also called for a di­rect flight from Kuwait to the Kur­dis­tan re­gion to help boost both peo­ples’ com­mu­ni­ca­tions. On the op­por­tu­ni­ties that the re­gion of­fers to for­eign in­vestors, Barzani stressed that the re­gion’s in­vest­ment law is one of the best world­wide. On the rise of Is­lamist move­ments in Kur­dis­tan, Barzani stressed that they formed no more than 16 per­cent of the re­gion’s pop­u­la­tion and en­joy free­dom and democ­racy to a great ex­tent as long as they re­main within the lim­its of democ­racy and law. “We have no prob­lem with ei­ther the Is­lamist blocs or any other move­ments,” he re­it­er­ated, re­mind­ing that, at the same time, a pol­icy of zero tol­er­ance to­wards any se­cu­rity threats or calls to spread anar­chy in the re­gion.

On yes­ter­day’s Kirkuk blasts that claimed many in­no­cent lives, Barzani stressed that ter­ror­ism was a dan­ger­ous phe­nom­e­non threat­en­ing ev­ery­body in Iraq. How­ever, he as­sured that the se­cu­rity sit­u­a­tion was rel­a­tively sta­ble in Kur­dis­tan. “Iraq has been go­ing through a real dilemma and ev­ery­body should stick to the con­sti­tu­tion and work to­gether on spar­ing Iraq go­ing through pos­si­ble dis­as­ters. Only then, we will all be able to find so­lu­tions and ways out of this dilemma,” he said.

More­over, Barzani stressed that he whole­heart­edly sup­ported the de­mands of pro­tes­tors in An­bar gover­norate and any other city pro­vided ev­ery­body fully ob­serves the con­sti­tu­tion and pre­vents Al-Qaeda el­e­ments from pen­e­trat­ing their groups and seiz­ing the op­por­tu­nity for their own ben­e­fit.

Com­ment­ing on the sit­u­a­tion in Syria, Barzani said that in col­lab­o­ra­tion with UN or­ga­ni­za­tions, Kur­dis­tan has sent large quan­ti­ties of re­lief aid to the Syr­ian peo­ple. He also ex­pressed his readi­ness to co­or­di­nate with Kuwaiti NGOs to pass the aid to the dis­placed Syr­i­ans. “Kurds in Syria are only seek­ing their rights – they have no am­bi­tions to grab power or author­ity and they re­al­ize that the Syr­ian peo­ple have ev­ery right to de­ter­mine their own des­tiny,” he con­cluded, re­mind­ing that he had re­jected re­peated re­quests from the chair­man of the Syr­ian tran­si­tional coun­cil to in­ter­vene in the con­flict.

Kur­dis­tan Re­gion Pres­i­dent Mas­soud Barzani meets with a group of Kuwaiti jour­nal­ists ac­com­pa­nied by the Kuwaiti Am­bas­sador to Iraq in his strong­hold in Sala­haddin, 30 kilo­me­ters north­east of Er­bil on Wed­nes­day, Jan­uary 16, 2013.

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