Minister Falah Mustafa, the Head of the Department of Foreign Relations, addressed a conference in the European Parliament on human rights in Kurdistan and Iraq during a two-day official visit to Brussels this week.
Minister Mustafa also met with members of the European Parliament, government officials from the European Union and Belgium and visited both the Iraqi Embassy and Kurdistan Regional Government Representation to the EU. He was accompanied by the KRG Representative to the EU, Delavar Ajgeiy.
At the European Parliament, Minister Mustafa met separately with the Leader of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats, MEP Hannes Swoboda. He aslo met MEP Charles Tannock who is the Conservative Foreign Affairs Spokesman in the European Parliament.
In both meetings Minister Mustafa discussed a number of issues related to developments in Kurdistan, Iraq and the wider region. He also asked for their assistance in working towards recognition by the European Parliament of the crimes committed by the former regime against the Kurds as genocide.
Minister Mustafa also sought ways in which relations between the European Parliament and the Kurdistan Region can be strengthened. In his meeting with MEP Tannock, Minister Mustafa said, ‘We would like to see increased engagement from the European Parliament to help Iraq move in the right direction.
We also hope that a friendship group focused on Kurdistan can be established inside the European Parliament.’ He reiterated the same message during his meeting with MEP Swoboda.
In his visit to the European Union offices, Minister Mustafa met with a group of officials from the European External Action Service headed by the Director for North Africa, Middle East, Arabian Peninsula, Iran and Iraq, Cristian Berger.
During the meeting Minister Mustafa briefed the delegation on the significance of Iraq´s parliamentary elections, the current issues between Erbil and Baghdad, the Kurdistan Region´s relationship with Turkey and the need for the European Union to be engaged with Iraq.