EU-Iraq high-level meeting discussed challenges ahead and cooperation
The Cooperation Council under the EU-Iraq Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) between the European Union (EU) and the Republic of Iraq met for the second time in Brussels on 18 October 2016.
The meeting was opened by the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, who headed the EU delegation. The Iraq delegation was led by the Iraqi Minister of Foreign Affairs Ibrahim al-Jaafari, and also included the Kurdistan Region of Iraq’s Head of Foreign Relations, Falah Mustafa Bakir.
The European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, Christos Stylianides, and the EU Special Representative for Human Rights, Stavros Lambrinidis took part in thematic discussions.
With the campaign to liberate Mosul from Da’esh under way, ministers’ discussions were initially focused on Iraq’s immediate humanitarian and stabilisation challenges. Further into the meeting they also reflected on Iraq’s longer term needs.
During the meeting the EU commended the government of Iraq for its efforts to address the current crisis. It outlined the support it is providing for Iraq’s immediate needs through humanitarian aid and assistance for displaced people, covering both short and longer term needs, including education for displaced children.
It also discussed with the Iraqi representatives the priority areas of support for the stabilisation of liberated areas in Iraq, including the removal of “booby traps”, so called improvised explosive device (IEDs), which is a precondition for the return of displaced people.