Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq (cabinet.gov.krd) – Kurdistan Region Prime Minister, Nechirvan Barzani, yesterday received the Head of United States Senate Armed Services Committee, Senator Tim Kaine, and his accompanying delegation, including members of the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Senator Kaine said that the aim of his visit is to closely observe the situation in the Kurdistan Region. He thanked the people, government and Peshmerga forces of Kurdistan Region who do not only confront the Islamic State Terrorist organisation, ISIS, but also accommodated and continue providing assistance to over 1.7 million refugees and internally displaced people, IDPs.
The US Senate delegation members expressed its concern over the ISIS recent advances, and the lack of a plan to eradicate the terrorist organisation, stressing that in their meetings with the Iraqi Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi, they will urge him to further involve members of the Sunni community in the fight against terrorism.
The delegation expressed its support for the Kurdistan Region’s concerns regarding Baghdad’s attitudes, reiterating that the Iraqi federal government should pay the Region’s liabilities, based on the laws and agreements reached between the two sides.
Prime Minister Barzani thanked the US Senate delegation for its visit and the assistance of the people and government of United States to Kurdistan Region, particularly military and humanitarian assistance, which have played a significant role in repulsing ISIS. He hoped that the assistance to the Region will continue.
Prime Minister Barzani urged the delegation to play a role in settling the differences between Erbil and Baghdad that would lead Baghdad to abide by the December agreement on oil export and budgetary issues, and fulfils its commitments.
He also urged the delegation to encourage the international community to fund the United Nations agencies operating in the Kurdistan Region in order to be able to continue delivering their assistance, as the Region continues receiving new waves of IDPs.
Exchanging views regarding the relations between United States and Kurdistan Region, and the challenges that the Region faces, were also discussed in the meeting.