Foreign Minister Receives his French Counterpart Mr. Jean-Yves Le Drian

Foreign Minister Mr.  Mohamad A. Alhakim received French Foreign Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Mr. Jean-Yves Le Drian.

The two Ministers discussed developing bilateral relations in various fields, activating the strategic understanding document for bilateral relations, and ways to enhance consultation and coordination between Baghdad and Paris.

Minister Alhakim stressed Iraq’s keenness to develop the distinguished level of relations with France, and looks forward to exploring new prospects for cooperation, especially in the field of economy.

The two sides also discussed the importance of the entering of major investment companies and contributing to the reconstruction of infrastructure, stating that the government is concerned to overcome all the difficulties that stand in front of the entry of French companies.

The discussions between the Ministers focused on strengthening bilateral cooperation and  security along the border between Iraq and Syria to prevent the infiltration  of terrorists into Iraqi territory.

They also discussed facilitating the granting of entry visas to Iraqis wishing to visit France, whether they are businessmen or tourists.

Minister Alhakim affirmed Iraq’s position on the issue of Da’esh members on the Syrian soil in Al-Houl camp stating that Iraq is concerned with the receipt of Da’esh terrorists who hold Iraqi nationality and their families that will be tried in Iraqi courts according to the laws in force. Iraq is not concerned with foreign terrorists who carried out terrorist operations outside Iraq and that their states have to take deal with them.

The Ministers touched on several regional and international issues of mutual interest. These include: Turkey’s military operation in northeastern Syria, efforts to resolve the crisis in Syria, the role of Iraq in trying to ease tensions between Iran and America, and efforts to bring Iran and Saudi Arabia closer.

The two Ministers also discussed the necessary preparations for the forthcoming visit of French President Mr. Macron to Baghdad planned to take place in the framework of strengthening relations between the two countries.

On his part Mr.  Jean-Yves Le Drian affirmed France’s solidarity and continued activation of partnerships with Iraq in the field of security and construction, pointing out that France has already allocated one billion Euros to contribute to support Iraq, pointing out the importance of holding an international coalition for a quick meeting to discuss the situation in Syria, praising the role played by Baghdad to avoid escalation in the Arab Gulf region, and promote the safety of navigation.