President Barzani Visits Kuwait
Kurdistan is looking forward to developing and strengthening its relations with Kuwait in all domains, especially the economic and cultural fields, President of the Kurdistan Region Masoud Barzani said.
Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani arrived in Kuwait City on Saturday on an official visit to hold meetings with the Emir of Kuwait and other senior Kuwaiti officials.
On his arrival, the President and an accompanying senior KRG delegation were welcomed at Kuwait City airport by Sheikh Sabah Al-Khalid Al-Sabah, the First Deputy Prime Minister and the Foreign Minister of Kuwait.
President Barzani is due to also visit Abu Dhabi in this Gulf visit to meet with the leadership of the UAE. In both countries, the President will discuss bilateral relations, the threat of ISIS terrorists, and the plight of Iraqi IDPs who have sought refuge in Kurdistan.
In statements during his reception of a Kuwaiti press delegation in Erbil on June 9, Barzani noted that the people of Kurdistan greatly admire Kuwaiti leadership and people and unveiled that he would shortly visit Kuwait as a part of a Gulf tour to discuss regional developments, adding that his talks with Kuwaiti officials would deal with means to bolster bilateral economic and trade relations.
The main objective of the Gulf tour is to “reinforce cooperation to get Iraq out of its ordeal,” he said, underlining the importance of coordination to cope with the developments which affect the whole region
Kurdistan sounded the alarm bell for more than a year about the threat of IS’s seizure of the strategic city of Mosul, expressing readiness to deploy Peshmerga forces to prevent this from happening, but “nobody heeded our calls,” he told the Kuwaiti guests, also underlining that the IS is not an invincible military force. “Everybody has to cooperate to defeat IS and expel it from Mosul because as long as it remains in Mosul that means it exists,” he said.
On the annexation of Kirkuk to Kurdistan, Barzani said article 140 of the Iraqi Constitution stipulates returning residents who were brought to the city by the former regime to change its demographic structure to their original cities, then conducting a census and holding a referendum on its destiny. “People of Kirkuk are the ones who decide the fate of their city,” he laid it bare.
On the issue of Kurdistan’s independence from Iraq, Barzani said “All people have the right to self-determination and we have struggled for a unified Iraq in which all Iraqis live as partners in all domains but the successive governments have not heeded our demands.”
Meanwhile, members of the Kuwaiti delegation noted that their visit is meant to boost the historic friendship between Kuwait and Kurdistan and to get first-hand information about developments in the province. The delegation included Kuwait Times’ Chief-in-Editor Abd Al-Rahman Al- Alyan, Kuwait News Agency’s Deputy Director General for Editorial Affairs Saad Al-Ali, Editorin- Chief of Al-Anbaa Newspaper Yousef Al- Marzouq, and Kuwait Journalists Association’s Manager Adnan Al-Rashed.