“Peshmerga lead us in fight against ISIS”
German Defence Minister
German Defence Minister Ursula Von Der Leyen welcomed by the senior officials in the autonomous Kurdistan Region, where she promised further support to the Kurdish Peshmerga fighters in the fight against so-called Islamic State.
During her visit to Kurdistan, President of Kurdistan Region Massoud Barzani and Prime Minster Nechirvan Barzani and his Deputy Qubad Talabani in Erbil received German Minister and accompanied military and political delegation.
Ms Leyen stated that she was very impressed by the progress the Kurdish forces achieved since her first visit to the Region almost eight months ago.
Ms Leyen emphasized on the significant role of Peshmerga forces in combatting ISIS, saying that “Peshmerga are leading us in the fight against ISIS.”
She also added that the training they have taken by the German military advisors have been applied to defeat myth of ISIS.
"We have, in the meantime, delivered 1,800 tons of equipment. We have trained 4,700 Peshmerga, a battalion of Yazidis, some Kakais also. This is absolutely necessary, because good equipment and good training ensures survival in the fight against IS, and that is our common goal," Reuters quoted the defense minister.
The German Minister expressed the readiness of her country to expand contributing more helps to the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), in particular with helping the refugees and internally displaced people, who have fled terrorism and sought shelter in the Kurdistan Region.
President Barzani warmly welcomed the German delegation, stressing that the mutual relations between the two sides has been further strengthened due to Germany’s commitment to eradicating the threat of terrorism.
“Support for the Kurdistan Region will continue and the ultimate aim of the free world is the complete eradication of the terrorists of the Islamic State,” Ms Leyen said in the meeting with President Barzani.
Premier Barzani in the meeting with Ms Leyen noted that Germany has been assisting Kurdistan since the very beginning of the ISIS threat.
Regarding the internal political disputes between the Kurdish parties and its effect on the morale of the Peshmerga forces, PM Barzani highlighted that they has “no effect” on the morale of Peshmerga forces in the frontlines.
The KRG and the Kurdish leadership welcomes all humanitarian assistance, PM Barzani said, as it provides security and other basic help to an extraordinary number of refuge seekers while facing severe financial constraints.