HE Minister of Foreign Affairs: His Excellency the Minister of Foreign Affairs has held productive talks where he met with His Highness the Emir. His Highness stressed the importance of developing the relationship and upgrading it to a strategic level and developing relations, especially economic ones, and continuing to support the Republic of Iraq in its battle against terrorism. We encourage the Iraqi government to continue their efforts and to continue the post-liberation efforts. We stressed the importance of reconstruction. The State of Qatar affirmed its commitment to play an active role in the reconstruction process and stressed the position of the State of Qatar on the importance of a unified Iraq and that all differences should be overcome through dialogue and through a comprehensive national reconciliation program that includes all sects. The brotherly Republic of Iraq has a history of coexistence among all races and sects. The Iraqi nation is important and has its place among the Arab countries and the whole world and Iraq is now preparing to return to its usual place.
We also talked about the regional circumstances and the repercussions of the Gulf crisis and the crisis of the blockading countries with international diplomacy in their refusal to engage in dialogue and proof of what the State of Qatar was accused of, and their continued unfair and illegal actions and behavior in this direction. We discussed collective security system as well as the regional conditions in general and the challenges experienced by the region and the continuing fabrication of crises in the region while there are crises still continuing and have not been resolved yet. We also addressed the development and we encourage the Iraqi government to enter into dialogue with the Kurdistan government and we congratulate them for their efforts to prevent Iraq from disintegration and encourage them to have an understanding that includes all the spectrum of the Iraqi people, including the brothers in Kurdistan. We hope that these efforts will be successful and we see Iraq restoring back its usual place.
Welcome dear brother, Your Excellency, and we hope that this visit will be a new start for the best of Qatari-Iraqi relations.
Iraqi Foreign Minister: In the name of God the Most Gracious the Most Merciful ... I am very grateful to my brother the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Qatar, Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani for this kind invitation and I hope that this step constitutes a qualitative change in the history of Iraqi-Qatari relations. Political and also security aspects and contribute to the revitalization of the Arab relationship with all countries because the strategies of the Iraqi government in general and the Iraqi Foreign Ministry in particular is to establish the relationship on the basis of understanding and stay away from everything that would strain the relationship with Arab countries and even with all countries of the world so the origin of dispute is not a matter of geographic proximity. Qatar is not a specific country for Iraq, but for now, the world is living a neighborhood issue. It is not a matter of geographical proximity. Geographically and politically, economically, intellectually and faithfully. Iraq is no longer suffering from the question of geographical convergence. It is also in a geographical area not very far. We emphasize the establishment of relations and the continuation of relations and participation in creating a positive atmosphere in all countries in the region. Qatar also deals with us within the framework of the Arab League, we cooperate in everything that would strengthen relations between us and our brothers.
What has emerged from Iraq has just been victory which is not exclusive to the Iraqis, it is the expression of a victory of the sincere wills of all the Arab and Muslims and even the international community because the victims of terrorism are from all segments of society in the world. It began at the beginning of the twenty-first century in America in Washington and New York and continued to other countries of the world, to Europe, Southeast Asia and all regions without exception.
Since terrorism is a real and strategic enemy, the whole world is victorious. Iraq has chosen to bear the greatest responsibility for taking the direct field tax and paying the blood tax.
However, it is not easy to recognize all the brothers who stood by us politically, in the media, economically and even logistically and the training that we got from all the countries of the world. Iraq records that this victory is a victory for all of you and you have to rejoice and boast victory achieved and we must not limit ourselves to borders. We must be victorious. If Iraq has just emerged from a security battle and achieved success, today it will continue to achieve an expression that we will express a battle for reconstruction. This requires that we exert more effort and the war experiences in history have taught us that the time of war may be short, but the time of reconstruction may be long. The wars that we have gone through history are many and the warlike ones have revealed facts once, but after that time, we are waiting for all our brothers as well as our sisterly country Qatar, to stand by Iraq. We also stood by Qatar, as we did with our brothers in other countries.
Iraq is made up of a group of societies, one of which is the Kurdish community, with its history and struggle. We have stood together in the opposition and we have continued to live together. We are now cooperating together. The whole world is witnessing this experience closely and the Iraqi experience is standing.
Kurdish alongside the Arab alongside the Sunni Turkmen alongside the Shiite, all live together in Iraq. I do not think that this noble experience exists any other part of the world save in Iraq, we speak in a practical language, in the Iraqi parliament, the Sunni sits beside Arab Shiite alongside a Kurdish man, alongside a woman, all are embodied in the Iraqi experience without discord. Iraq provided a unique experience more than any federal system in the world was able to do. America's federation consists of 50 states and 50 constitutions.
I think that a state from the states tried to achieve what happened in the region of Kurdistan in Iraq. We say it without ego. But with all confidence, what happened was not an Arab-Kurdish or Turkmen rivalry. It was a process of leaving from the legal side. Any country in the world would not permit what Iraq permitted. Knowledge burns publicly, and the flag of a certain country is raised in the skies of Iraq, and it flutters and it constitutes a provocation to the conscience of Iraqis, and the conscience of all Arabs and Muslims. Iraqi was very patient about this, and did not respond to anything named.
No one imagines that Iraq, God forbid, in a battle with his brothers and sons Kurds, this talk never exists, as we started this policy we will continue this policy our strategy is stable and clear and our bilateral relationship between us and all the countries of the world, especially the brotherly countries of the Arab countries, whether in a quarrel to Iraq or beyond the geographical basin are all aimed at establishing the best economic, security and political relations with our brothers.
We really appreciate what the region goes through in terms of attempts to tamper with the security of the region, the strategy of the region, the economy of the region. We are keen to keep the relationship as good as possible. Iraq will not hesitate to contribute to this issue. Iraq without the other neighboring countries in terms of neighborhoods, it is once on an Arabic basis, and it might be other nationalities during other times. We revolve what is in our hands and not what is in non-Arab countries. Turkey, it is a neighboring country to Iraq. The decision is not from us. We took it and left it in northern Iraq. Turkey is a country that has its history and civilization, and it is now a turning point for Iraq. We do not have to adapt ourselves and our patience to its mistakes. We also have a strong and good relationship. We look forward to a strong and good relationship. Today, the Turkish forces are present in Shaykhun. We have not seen the aggressive approach and we are still adopting the method of dialogue. No state in the world accepts that the forces of a second country surround them. However, we balance between our rejection of these forces and our adherence to our joint strategy with Turkey and Iran, which is also a country with multiple nationalities. We believe that the relationship between us and these countries is a trust in our necks. Iraq has preserved it and we will continue to preserve it and imagine that this is a force for Iraq, but evidence of something indicates the insistence on maintaining relations between us and these countries Iraq has made enough of the insistence on maintaining a balanced relationship with neighboring countries geographically a Turkish state liberal Islamic country like Iran Islamic Republic Al-Faqih is a third country, for example, the southern part of Kuwait, the state of Amiriyah, another state, Syria is a democratic state in its own way, and so the situation with these countries is different in nature. We have the self-confidence to deal with these countries and are very frank and balanced with them. We will continue to focus on common strategies with all of them. There is no contradiction between us and all of them. I assure you that Iraq regards all these countries as humane and civilized. It is believed that the exchange of interests between us and you i.e. the common interests on one side and the common dangers on the other side will constitute real motives for establishing the Iraqi relations with all neighboring countries. We also hope that we are not isolated from any country.
You may hear the Iraqi speech. The Arab League is not with the exclusion of any country, not with the siege of any country. As for problems, we believe that the principle of dialogue and the mechanism of dialogue is the one that can accommodate all these differences and can move beyond the region of the ripped shore and move away to the shore of unity and Iraq will remain faithful to these principles and will not replace them with anything else. Again I renew my thanks and appreciation to my brother, welcome everyone.
Q: Haitham Saleh from Al Jazeera: My question to the Iraqi minister is that Iraq is not besieged by any country and the region is being subjected to vibration. How can Iraq achieve a balanced relationship with its Arab environment, which is fraught with differences and divisions and plays a role in solving the Gulf crisis based on its good relationship with the parties to the crisis?
My question to His Excellency the Foreign Minister of Qatar, we have recently noticed some statements from the countries of the blockade, which belittle the five-month crisis. Today, the American Foreign Ministry has renewed the call to the parties to the crisis to sit at the dialogue table, warning against entering the region in turmoil.
Iraqi Foreign Minister: As for the position of Iraq, I think Iraq before the crisis floats on the surface spoke more than once and shouted its voice from the platform of the Arab League. The Arab League of States is not a league of governors or governments and the ruling regime is part of these countries, we did not tolerate the sensitivities that took place between these countries and our relationship was based on this basis and the explicit bilateral relations between Iraq and these countries have reinforced this concept and we in time stand with this state or this country.
Our observations on the media in general and on Al Jazeera in particular is that it fed the literature of discord, whether from sectarian backgrounds or from the national backgrounds you have the right to say and you have the right to be reserved regarding this talk.
Intervention of the representative of the Al Jazeera: Al Jazeera is based on the opinion and the other opinion
Iraqi Foreign Minister: Yes, opinion and the other opinion as you claim, as you say, and you will know that my words have remained so for long and I hope you finish with a new page and you will come up with a new page and you will receive a new Jaafari response because from now on we will say this. This is a historic mistake committed by Al-Jazeera, and please correct it as soon as possible, and when you do; you will receive all respect, appreciation and support. Because this is my covenant between me and my Lord, I have only the word and this word I sell it only to those who change their word to be righteous right instead of false this is who knows Jaafari is like this.
HE Minister of Foreign Affairs: With regard to the statements of the besieged countries and the narrowing of the crisis and considering the Gulf crisis as a minor crisis first, it is not a minor crisis when they make a dispute from nothing. This is evidence that it was an absurd act against the State of Qatar and its repercussions are serious. Now its repercussions are beginning to surface. In the regional circumstances it was found that the repercussions of this crisis on the collective security of the Gulf States are beginning to appear. The international efforts to combat terrorism have been affected by this crisis. The international efforts to resolve other crises have been affected by this crisis and now their crisis has become more than a crisis with Qatar. It has become a crisis with international diplomacy by persisting in their intransigent behavior and their rejection of dialogue only to continue the political extremism they speak and the language they speak against the State of Qatar and now they are trying to minimize the size of the State of Qatar. This is the biggest proof that they are in crisis now with international diplomacy and a crisis with themselves. We always see that the State of Qatar spoke in a language of mind that speaks in the language of dialogue. It demanded from countries that if they have any concerns that affect collective security they should come to the table and prove that they are right and that on the basis of these countries failed to achieve all this and failed to invest political funds in Western capitals but despite all this Qatar always says that we hope that wisdom prevails and overcomes this behavior by wise behavior and engage in dialogue to resolve this crisis, but to ignore the crisis by simplifying and ignoring the media and act in another hidden and twisted way will not solve and overcome the crisis. However, we will not go beyond the violations that have taken place against our people. If their people do not represent anything to them, our people will represent a lot to us.
Q: Abdullah al-Maraghi from the Qatar News Agency: His Excellency the Iraqi Foreign Minister it is obvious now there is an opening towards the Gulf countries, or countries of the region, but what is expected for the strong relationship between Iran and Iraq and the strained relationship between Iraq and the Gulf countries. Will this affect the reality on the ground?
Your Excellency the Qatari Foreign Minister, from time to time there are statements about opening an embassy in Iraq. How credible is the subject?
Iraqi Foreign Minister: Our openness to any country and the achievement of a win between us and other countries are subject to the strategy of the Polar Bilateral. This is not a substitute for the rest of the countries we now establish relations with more than one of the countries of the world, we aspire to extend our relations with all the countries of the world and invest, based on common interests and at the same time the common dangers which are the most prominent of its vocabulary. Now the terrorist threat of this da'ashi combines between those who are different and frozen and those who hold the mind and rationality freeze many things. A common danger Damna in front of a Daesh this common threat made us extend our hand to shake hands with a handshake, but hearts with the rest of the countries that we freeze the existing differences and take advantage of the experiences of the world that have preceded us in this area I think if I understand your question this is not a substitute for countries ..he explained.
Question: The relations between Iran and Iraq are very strong, but the relationship between the countries of the region and Iran are full of tension to an extent. How can….
Iraqi Foreign Minister: it's clear Abdullah, I thank you for this question because it is a sensitive question. Iraq does not spare any effort to employ its relationship with any of the countries of the world for the rest of the countries. We now have a relationship with the countries of the six geographical basin: Iran, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Jordan, and Kuwait. We want these relationships for Iraq politically, economically, and also in terms of security. We also want to employ them for a relationship with the rest of our brothers; we will not stop those who want to befriend with us. We will employ this relationship with the rest. We have done it in the past, and we will do it, and continue to do it. You know these countries, and you now see my picture and my voice during this meeting. We have focused a lot on the necessity to harness these relations with the rest of our brothers in the region. We believe that this is honesty on our necks that we must carry out. Just as I am a friend of Iran, the Iranian-Iraqi relations must be employed for the service of other countries. Just as we have a relationship with Saudi Arabia, we want to employ this relationship with other countries. Just as we are friends of Kuwait, we employ this relationship with the rest of our brothers. Last year, I flew from Iran to Oman and then to Kuwait, I was entrusted with the Iranian-Gulf rapprochement, there was no problem with us. I spoke and I addressed the Arab league. I conveyed the Iranian suffering to them, and I conveyed the Gulf suffering to them.
We cannot disassociate between our interests and our brothers with the rest of the countries, and this honestly will remain on our necks, and we will continue to carry it out. I believe we will agree to this first of all for our good intentions, and to engage our strategic interests and respond to our brothers. What is happening in Qatar is the same thing. Our position was firm, and it won't change. We are keen, and we will employ all our capacity and ability to establish our regional relations between us and the rest of the countries. This cannot be at all. I imagine that the strength of Iraq comes from the strengths of holding on to all its Arab brothers, and that a relationship with a state will not be at the expense of this result. Iraq is an Arab country, and is even a Gulf one. What is the Gulf's understanding I ask you, Abdullah? The Gulf is an expression of a political charter or demographic reality on earth. What does the word 'Gulf' mean?
Reporter: It means cooperation.
Iraqi Foreign Minister: No, what is understood is what the Gulf is. I say that this is a Gulf country first. Iraq is a Gulf country, or is it not a Gulf country? Iraq is a Gulf country for many reasons. Saddam Hussein hurt the Gulf States, and destroyed Gulf countries. This is a matter that history will preserve. Is Iraq a Gulf country or is it not a Gulf country? We overlook the Gulf, or don't we overlook the Gulf States? We don't have any aspirations. We are not a poor country that wants to beg. No, it is Gulf territory, and the Gulf is a reality that comprises several states, and Iraq is one of them.
HE Minister of Foreign Affairs: We welcome you in the Gulf States and we hope that you do not break from us now. With regards to your question about the embassy in Baghdad. There is an agreement that the State of Qatar will open an embassy in Baghdad, and that an ambassador will be appointed. There were some conditions that we went through during the past period, and this situation made things difficult for us. Now we have clear directives from His Highness the Emir to reopen the embassy in an urgent way and to appoint an ambassador soon, God willing. We hope this will be a step, just as I said at the beginning of the press conference, that the visit of His Excellency the Minister to Doha will be a new page for Qatari-Iraqi relations.
Question: Salman Al-Najjar from Arab Television. Your Excellency, I actually have two questions. The first question is for His Excellency the Qatari Foreign Minister. Your Excellency, a few days ago, the King of Bahrain threatened a new package of measures against Qatar and to impose visas on Qatari citizens for entering Bahrain. What is your response at the Ministry of Interior? My question for His Excellency the Iraqi Minister: Saudi Arabia requested mediation between itself and Iran, through the Iraqi Minister of Interior, is mediation still in place during the escalation in tension. What is Iraq's position regarding the tension between Iran and Saudi Arabia?
HE Minister of Foreign Affairs: Regarding your question about the statements from the King of Bahrain. First of all, statements will not make or delay anything. Bahrain never had had anything here, and it participated in the blockade, among other things. If the decision was up to Bahrain, we can respond to it, but we know that the decision comes from outside.
Iraqi Foreign Minister: What concerns the position of Iraq between Iran and Saudi Arabia lies in the circle of strategies and is not confined to the Minister of Foreign Affairs or the Minister of Interior, or even the Prime Minister. This is a strategy and it has been called a strategy because it is bigger than any Minister, and wider than any strategic timeline. It is related to the long-term, and it concerns all state institutions, and when we discuss this subject, we are talking about everyone. This is because I think the relationship between Saudi Arabia and Iran matter to us a lot. This is on the east of Iraq, and that is on the west of Iraq. Therefore, Iraq is doing all it can to re- establish the relationship to the best that it can be, and because this reflects on us just like the northern part of Iraq and between Turkey, and between Syria. We exerted efforts-not very little-to close the distance. During many meetings, we met with Mr. Edrogan and Mr. Bashar Al-Assad to bring them closer. Why? Because it lies in the circle of strategic goals. This is the situation between Saudi Arabia and Iran, and with Iraq playing a role. But it did not float to the surface. It played a role. Now, we are playing a role in bringing together different countries with each other, and we hope that we will achieve this result, and I think this is in the interest of us all.