France vows support to Iraq’s fight against Daesh/ISIS

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French President Emmanuel Macron and Iraqi PM Mustafa Al-Kadhimi

BAGHDAD:  French President Emmanuel Macron on Saturday stressed his country’s support to Iraq’s stability and its fight against the Daesh/ISIS terrorist group.

“We are in Baghdad to consolidate stability in Iraq and the region, and Iraq’s stability is not possible unless it is accompanied by preparations in the region,” Macron told a joint press conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi ahead of the opening of the Baghdad Cooperation and Partnership Conference for neighboring countries.

He added, “France is keen on the stability of Iraq and the remnants of the Daesh/ISIS terrorist organization should not be tolerated.”

Al-Kadhimi, for his part, said Iraq is “keen to partner with Paris and all countries” in the fight against the terrorist group.

The French president arrived in Iraq early Saturday on an official visit to participate in the Baghdad summit of neighboring countries.

Kuwaiti Prime Minister Sabah Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, and Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council, Nayef Al-Hajraf, were among the first key participants to land in Baghdad for summit, which will also be attended by the permanent members of the UN Security Council.

The European Union and the G20 countries will also participate, in addition to neighboring countries Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Kuwait, Jordan, Qatar and Egypt, according to previous statements by the Iraqi Foreign Ministry.

Baghdad seeks to strengthen its economic relations with neighboring countries and open its doors to investments and to establish mega construction projects in areas damaged in the course of the war against Daesh/ISIS.

The Baghdad Cooperation and Partnership Conference “will focus on cooperation and economic integration between Iraq and its partners,” Nizar al-Khairallah, Iraqi Foreign Ministry undersecretary, said on Wednesday.

Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein also on Thursday noted the significance of the conference, saying it would “enhance the Iraqi role, support Iraq, build economic partnerships with countries in the region, and transform the space of conflicts and tensions in the region into a state of dialogue.”–IANS

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