Barzani in Munich to Participate in Security Conference
Kurdistan Region President Massoud Barzani headed to Germany last Thursday to take part at the Munich Security Conference and meet with a number of US and EU officials.
Barzani discussed the war against Islamic State group and international support for the Peshmerga forces that have been fighting ISIS with the world’s top official at the sideline of Munich Security Conference on Friday.
“President Barzani was very clearly sending us a message that because of some economic difficulties coming from the oil price the international community should increase its support for the regional government of Kurdistan and Peshmerga,” Italian Foreign Minister, Paolo Gentiloni told Rudaw.
Rudaw's correspondent in Munich said Barzani met with a number of top officials; including Jordan’s King Abdullah, France's Defence Minister Laurent Fabius, the Foreign Minister of Italy Paolo Gentiloni, and Lebanon’s Prime Minister Tammam salam.
“What Peshmerga are doing and the success they have had, in Sinjar and in other areas, is greatly appreciated in Italy,” said Gentiloni after talking with Barzani.
Gentiloni also reiterated Italy's continued support for Kurdish Peshmerga forces and the Kurdistan Regional Government.
Tammam said the meeting was “constructive” and “positive.”
“Without any doubt all those who are battling Dash need support. Peshmerga have been able to move forward and win over the brutal enemy, yes they need to be supported by all means,” he said.
The Kurdish leader has reportedly been discussing the planned operation to liberate Mosul from Islamic State (ISIS) group with Iraq's Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi. That operation, according to the local officials, is set to begin in the near future.
The two sides emphasized the necessity of mutual cooperation between Peshmerga forces and the Iraqi Army when it comes to liberating Iraq’s second largest city, Mosul, from ISIS.
Speaking at a joint press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin on Thursday, Abadi urged Kurdish leaders not to go ahead with their planned independence referendum, arguing that the Kurdistan Region is part of Iraq and should remain united.
“Kurdistan is part of Iraq and I hope it remains that way,” Abadi said. “Disintegration is in no one's interest.”
In his speech at Munich conference on Friday, Abadi said that, with the exception of coalition forces carrying out airstrikes against ISIS, no country has the right to fight the radical group on the ground in Iraq, or violate Iraq’s sovereignty.