KRG delegation met world diplomats in New York
A high-ranking delegation from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) participated in the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York on 23 -29 September 2013 as part of the Iraqi delegation.
During the visit, the Kurdish delegation, which was led by Falah Mustafa, head of the KRG Department of Foreign Relations, held a number of meetings with foreign ministers from countries around the world.
Most of the discussions centered on the situation in Iraq and the Kurdistan Region, the recent parliamentary election in Kurdistan, and the success of this crucial democratic process.
Other topics included the situation in Syria, the conditions in which Syrian refugees are living, and the impact of all this on neighboring countries. The majority of the diplomats who met with the Kurdish delegation expressed their appreciation to the KRG and Iraq for accepting huge numbers of Syrian refugees and providing them with assistance.
During the meetings, the parties restated the need for the expansion of mutual cooperation, and the Kurdish delegation urged the ministers to establish diplomatic missions for their respective nations in the Kurdistan Region and to encourage their business communities to do business in this booming region.
The delegation met, among others, Qatari Foreign Minister Khalid alAttiyah. At the meetings, the parties discussed the current situation in Iraq and the upcoming Iraqi parliamen- tary elections, which are scheduled for April 2014. The parties reiterated the importance of the elections being staged on time.
The delegation also met the Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs, János Martonyi, to discuss the bilateral relations between the two countries, especially in the fields of agriculture, water resource management, and education, with Hungary keen to welcome Iraqi and Kurdish students in recognized Hungarian educational institutions.
The head of the Iraqi delegation, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, expressed the support of the Iraqi and Kurdish governments for the establishing of a Hungarian diplomatic mission in the Kurdistan Region, and offered to assist in its foundation.
For his part, Minister Martonyi reiterated his government’s commitment to supporting Iraq in fighting terrorism and terrorist acts.
The Kurdish delegation also attended a meeting between the Iraqi delegation and the Azerbaijani Foreign Minister, Almar Mohamedyarove. During the meeting, the representatives of both countries discussed the facilitation of travel between the two countries.
The Czech Minister for Foreign Affairs, Jan Kohout, also met the Iraqi delegation. The business ties between the two countries were discussed at the meeting, at which the Czech representative also expressed Czech companies’ interest in doing business in Iraq.
As part of the Iraqi delegation, Minister Falah Mustafa met with José Manuel García-Margallo, the Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation. The Iraqi delegation thanked the Spanish Minister for his country’s participation in the multi-national force tasked with protecting the security of Iraq, as well as the organization of the first Iraq donor conference in Madrid.
Minister García-Margallo expressed his country’s willingness to support Iraq and Spanish companies’ interest in doing business in the country.
The Iraqi delegation also participated in the annual Arab Foreign Ministers Meeting in New York. The meeting focused primarily on the issue of Syria and Palestine.
During a ministerial meeting relating to the situation in Syria and organized by the Jordanian Foreign Ministry and the European Union, Minister Mustafa delivered a speech detailing the current situation in the Kurdistan Region and the conditions in which the Syrian refugees are living in the Region. He called for international support in delivering aid to the two hundred thousand plus Syrian refugees in Kurdistan.
The Iraqi and Kurdish delegations also met the Australian and German foreign ministers as well as attending other events such as the reception for Queen Maxima of the Netherlands and the first anniversary of the Global Education Initiative.