Briefing of Dr. Ibraheem Al-Jaafari, The minister of Foreign Affairs at the press conference held in the Ministry's Headquarter regarding the meetings of London, Brussels and Paris about liberation of city of Mosul by the Iraqi Security Forces.
In the Name of God the most compassionate .. the most merciful. Peace be upon you and Gods mercy and blessings. I congratulate you and the Iraqi people regarding the impressive victories achieved by our sons of the Iraqi Security Forces via all of its categories: the Iraqi Army, Popular Mobilization Forces, Peshmarga, Sons of Tribes and all other military entities which contributed in achieving these victories. The ministry of foreign affairs had its own diplomatic tour that passed through four destinations during the latest two weeks started from London, and went through Luzan, Brussels and ended at Paris. It normal that the security file and the courageous military encounter of our troops in the front lines with care; since the whole world is looking towards Iraq today, and they proudly speaking about it, what I had seen at the different international conferences which I contributed at during my assignment period at the ministry of foreign affairs, or before it with overwhelming joy that reflected on the faces as the joy I see in the latest visit. The world is positively reacting, speaking and expressed their joy regarding the Iraqi victories as they are brothers of Iraq. The first meeting held in London, via the event named " the Iraqi – British Commercial Ministerial Council, specifically in 12/10 and chaired by Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs from one side and the Foreign Office from the other and represented by Mr. Thomas Elwood the state minister of Middle East affairs and attended by Baroness Emma Nicholson. Some Iraqi Officials from different specialties and I attended: Mr. Sami Al-Aaraji the head of Investment Commission , Dr. Aqeel Al-qhaza'aly the undersecretary of interior minister, thier excellencies Dr. Ahmed Barwari and Dr. Salih Al-Tamimi of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the other is our Ambassador in U.K. Both parties discussed many issues.. the most of it the importance the coordination needed to exchange the security and intelligence information, and what it can do in London in the two aforementioned fields, and discussed the humanitarian support of the IDPs which we gave it a special time and priority, in the same time we referred to the Turkish military violation to the Iraqi sovereignty, and we also discussed the facilitation of having the visa permits, we had gained promises from Foreign Office regarding this matter and we referred to the necessity of encouraging the British private sector to invest in Iraq. The conclusive statement is issued and stressed over the importance of intensifying the cooperation between both governments in the commerce, investment, security , migration fields and we discussed the issue of human rights and war against daesh in clear manner, moreover, the statement welcomed the intensified military cooperation in encountering da'esh and we welcomed the achievements of Global Coalition and Iraqi Security Forces in war against Da'esh in the different fronts … this was the briefing of Station one. Second Station – Lozan.. the meeting held in 15/10 in Lozan of Switzerland, and devoted for discussing the developments of the Syrian crisis and giving a priority to the City of Aleppo with the presence of many Countries Foreign Ministers. This meeting is preceded by many meetings – unfortunately- it didn’t solved the issue of dealing with the Syrian Profile; so that in this meeting there were a bit of lack of enthusiasm between the two poles who are in charge of running the meeting in Lozan which it is the US pole and the Russian Pole. We had a stance and we spoke over the necessity of communicating and exerting efforts in order to reach to a peaceful solution to this crisis and not to devote the military factor as a substance of the peaceful solution, we assured in this meeting and warned of sectarian treatment with the Syrian profile and circulating a baseless terms. The issue is a Syrian society issue and what is interlinked with any extensions here and there is influenced and effected away from the sectarian designations and this means existence of circulating process and to be in region to the sectarian state which it is not exists. And going beyond its globalization; which created a stereotyping the set up between Sunna and Shia.. so that we focused in the statement to avoid this issue, and give priority to the basic points which its already interlinked which it is: delivering the aids, and this is could not be happen unless there is a state of seizing the fire and it cant be done unless initiating a peaceful dialogue between the Syrian political teams. We back these points and we focused on the peaceful solution and mentioned that the previous solutions and military solution proved that Iraqi reading to the situation was correct since early levels , and unleash the military solution was useless. We have remind the issue of Turkish troops violation to the Iraqi sovereignty and its entry to the village of Ba'sheqa and we included that we hold some side lines meetings with US Foreign Secretary, and with the Foreign Ministers of Each of Russia, Iran, Egypt, Saudi Arabia , Qatar and Jordan. In Brussels, held the meeting of NATO on 18/10 and we met with the members of NATO and the meeting chaired by the S.G. and the presence of 28 country of the NATO. We delivered our address in the meeting and we pointed to the Turkish violation and claimed to avoid Iraq from any side – battles that could be on the account of Iraq strategic battle to defend itself and the world and to not to open any aimless cases and we also clarified that the hazards of terrorism is not only has its not only a local, nor regional and neither a middle east issues, but it will be extended to the world as whole and it alerts to be spread out into as many countries as it can and I said that all of your countries are threatened by terrorism without any exception; and encountering terrorism in Iraq since its considered as the first front is not a gain for us only; but all of you shall feel happy and I said this expression in more than one event and speech that the victories achieved by our heroic sons of Security Forces should have your admire and satisfaction and its not only an Iraqi victory but it’s a victory to all humanitarian societies in the world; because all of it are threatened by terrorism and they have the right to feel happy and wish to achieve this victory. We praised the role of the given support in different fields of aids that sent by the NATO via the members of NATO and their support to Iraq on its war against terrorism, and the NATO efforts concentrated on providing the aerial support and back up and military training. The meeting is also chaired by Iraqi ministry of foreign affairs and the European Side of Ms. Frederica Mogharini, there was a technical issues were discussed by special committees such as the human rights committee and trade committee and other related subjects were discussed in this meeting as well. We also mentioned the stance of the Iraqi Security Forces, popular mobilization, Peshmarga and its aware of all the humanitarian standards, such as what happened in Al-Fallujah, and in Al-Anbar and before it in Tikrit , and no one is doubt of the solidarity of the troops and categories of the Iraqi Military Forces among each other, and this is considered the basic factor of achieving the victory and in the same time I must mention that there are no dispute between the political powers regarding the terrorism encountering, which they are : ( the unity of the political stance and the unity of marching of the Iraqi security forces) who they carry a great secret of prevail. We expressed also the Iraqi ambition of getting more support by the democratic countries which headed by the European Union. The conference is held to support the efforts of the Iraqi government to liberate the city of Mosul and for the post – liberation phase. The conclusive statement enlisted some suggestions, and came to stress its support to the mobilization of the Iraqi federal government and its security forces and their frank refer to the role of popular mobilization. I've read the draft of the statement and I had four remarks about it. One referred the popular mobilization and the another is about the regional non interference. In France, the French president made a speech that focused on it about supporting Iraq and the necessity of standing by its side, moreover, the Iraqi Premier Dr. Haidar Al-Ebadi made his speech and it a was a comprehensive one stressed through Iraq's determination to liberate its territories and prevent the foreign intrusion and store the democracy, and the democratic regime, and from our side – too- we highlighted the privacy issue of Mosul city, and referring to its site in the encountering fields just like Diala, Salah El-din and as I belong to the community of Mosul for eight years and a half where I focused on some important aspects in this city and with the risks that surround it and it should be aware of. We assured to them that the Iraqi security forces depends on ready made plans that taking the advantage of its previous experiments and fully aware of the importance of time factor in order to preserve the safety of civilians just like in Fallujah and we may need some time in Mosul since the enemy attempts to bomb as much civilians as they can and hide in the houses and in the civilian establishments and behind the humans and aware of the ethics of the Iraqi security forces and intended to hinder their movement in Al-Mosul and we should take the humanitarian aspect into consideration regardless the expense. We focused on the issue of assistance to the IDPs.. you can imagine that a city like Mosul ( the second largest city in Iraq after Baghdad and their people is experiencing – god for bid – to destruction.. all Iraqi cities which destructed by Dae'sh terrorism and to the destruction policy; as a result we are not asking for minor requests , but we asked for a high importance assistance level. Our demands are considered legal ones and the whole world aware of its importance and it received a high level interaction and it was very good. The remarks which I read to you now, and frankly said that the sustaining of Iraqi victory requires from the Global Coalition to protect the Iraqi borders, and we need support in this regard, and we do not want to make war against any country, and we don’t to trespass on any one, neither threatening any one, but Iraq has the courage to defend its sovereignty, its lands and its fellow citizens, it will sacrifice the blood in order to preserve its security , and there is no more wise lesion than the lesson of encountering dae'sh and you have seen that what these gangs did to the world- but Thanking Alla they are defeated here in Iraq by the arms of the Iraqi heroes of the member s of Security Forces, and there is pressure against dae'sh in the east of Syria and this needs to large level of coordination by the members of the Global Coalition with Russia and to repeat what is said by daesh of the grievance of specific component since its considered the source of recruitment attraction. Iraq sovereignty is threatened by its enemies and its sons are courageously fighting to defend their country … Finally I referred to the western historical incident of what so called by " Marshal Project" that took place on 1948, and rebuild Germany after its experienced to destruction whereas it starts the war which costs the world a 55 million man as victims, never the less the west countries, USA and Britain get the advantage from the WWI experience and it rebuilt it… Iraq is experienced to destruction in this hard time which is represented by the reduction of financial resources due to low oil prices and high demands of budget categories and war expenditure… this concept with its different forms is referred to in more than one occasion; which made them give more assistance beside the two billion and half dollars, they donated two hundred million dollars and now one hundred million dollars.. Japan donated the addition of some new aids, I had met the French president Mr. Holland, and I briefed him with some of the details about what is going on in Iraq and the military progress and he expressed an excellent understanding and I remind them and said: what is happened in your present, in the Soccer Stadium in Niece and other similar losses, you have the right and you shall feel happy about what is achieved by encounter against daesh in Iraq, and he praised the Iraqi experience and the achievement. In the side lines of the meeting, I met the deputy Secretary of State Department and the deputy of Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs and they asked me to have a meeting.. I received them in my hosting place each separately; for talks, I spoke to my Turkish brother and the necessity of committing with and withdraw from the Iraqi territories specifically from village of Ba'shiqa. In fact, this is briefing of the meetings held and it was very intensive meetings and its difficult to mention all its details, but we conducted some side activities, such as: delivering a lecture in Brussels at a scientific institute regarding the struggle for democracy, and for countering terrorism and after it there were questions and answers and the reactions were good. Questions of Mass media. There is an ambiguity! The Turks says: we presented after the approval of the federal government, and they said also: we came after obtaining the approval of Kurdistan and there is misunderstanding. The important thing is Iraq extends a claim to the security council and we have no more information regarding the measures adopted in this issue. Did security council issue a resolution stipulating the withdrawal of Turkish troops under chapter 7, and what are the measures that adopted by Iraqi government if the Turks refused to withdraw? Minister Al-Jaafari: indeed, Turkey submitted many justifications. they said: we agreed with central government which it is incorrect and said again: we coordinated with the government of Kurdistan. The government of Kurdistan denied that it promised to do so, and in the same time the issue of entry to the Iraqi territories is a constitutional – sovereign case related to Iraq as whole, and said: we had previous convention. When we reviewed it, it was outlined in 1982 /1983 when it allowed to the Turkish troops to enter for 72 hours only and it ended and that was it. The whole world saw via TV channels the issuance of Iraqi unanimous resolution by Iraqi parliament to ban the entry of Turkish troops into Iraq. The Turks said we are haunting the members of PKK .. who bring them to Iraq? The Turks brought them through special agreement to Mountain of Qindeel which its difficult to control. All these pretexts are not true, and we highly commits to maintain relations with neighboring countries including Turkey, we also committed to preserve the Iraqi sovereignty and its territories, people, safety and its resources. As for the complaint submitted to the security council, its still active and we are coordinating with the concerned countries with this issue. When Turkish troops entered. We reacted in two spheres: the Arabic sphere supports us with an Arabic unanimous that rejects the Turkish entry and the UN – sphere, some countries supported us and the other abstained, we exerts the efforts and intensify it in order to reach to a unanimous to in the United Nations. There are a huge international supports Iraq is witnessing and there is new horizons from Moscow.. what are the nature of the Russian support? Minister Al-Jaafari: there is a general sphere that prevail its shadows in many countries that they agree to support Iraq since we started in Sept. 2014 without exception, I attended the first conference and in the first week of confrontation of ministry of foreign affairs, I reminded them its time to see the results of our work. Today we are in the end of 2016 and I feel that these countries supports Iraq and some of them sent funds and guns and the other gave maps and information in continuous manner. The Global coalition formed in line with a US initiative and many countries stayed out of this coalition. We didn’t designed the membership map of this international coalition, and we hoped that a large number if it is not unanimously participated in this coalition, but the conflicts among the countries and the axis policies. We extend our hands to all countries even those who are out of the global coalition; since our country is at risk and no one can stopping us from getting any assistance from this or that country and we didn’t bind with a multiple alliances to avoid the axis and conflict policy. Russia had its four – countries agreement and its meeting is held and it was not a substitute of the coalition countries and its role was to get the information which its important in the war against terrorism. The Russian intelligence and the rest of the world had a large amount of information, and we used it; so that we are attempting to coordinate between preserving the sovereignty of our country and safety or our citizens , the capacity and efficiency of our security forces and between our moderate and balanced obligations. Why ministry of foreign affairs didn’t invited the KRG delegation to participate in Paris conference regarding the issue of Mosul? Minister Al-Jaafari: KRG representation was with us in London, and I told him: come to Brussels, but when we arrived to Paris as Countries representatives not representing organizations, ministry of foreign affairs is a sovereign ministry and who ascend the position of Ministry of Foreign Affairs ought to represent Iraq as whole, that’s why we did not invited them. What is the stance of Arab Gulf Countries regarding the battle of Mosul? And regarding the participation of Public Mobilization and regarding the International stance? Minister Al-Jaafari: relatively dissimilar, but I wont disclose you that some countries feel sensitive towards the popular mobilization. I talked about the heroic stories of popular mobilization its integrity, its sacrifices and I constrained by some one to tell him: you many need them one day in your capital when it face – God for bid- a security disorder as it occurred in Iraq. You will need the popular mobilization for their heroic stances, when I visited Basra and Saw their streets is filled with the pictures of martyrs and they are all young and left widows, bereaved fathers and mothers and orphans behind. They didn’t go for a picnic in Fallujah. I believe that the popular mobilization made a brilliant and fantastic picture for humanitarian popular movement responded to the call of the religious marjia, and dedicated to liberate Iraq. The Arab states attitude is positive in general and even the Arab Gulf countries are not having the same stance. In general, there is a developing understanding with time and the more we presented the credible stances of our sons of the popular mobilization, the more positive respond we have. Are there countries promised to support Iraq militarily and logistically in your last trip? Minister Al-Jaafari: Yes, more than one country. We stress in every trip, and at every meeting on the principle of military support, but it should depends on our own terms, but we found an excellent response. Some were even simultaneously, for example, the donations amount the two hundred million or a million percent in the last trip. The interesting issue to consider is that, the international alliance in recent days didn't conducted any airstrikes, but there are some, especially in the southern axes, the role of the international coalition wasn’t exist .. Why the international coalition stands on the crowning podium despite the lack of adequate air coverage to the Iraqi security forces? but we can observe that there is a weakness in the role of the international coalition in support of the Iraqi security forces .. what the government's position on the future regarding this weakness? Minister Al-Jaafari: As For our party, we do not leave a chance until we invest it in order to mobilize these countries for the benefit of Iraq; and because our battle featured militarily, it is natural that the military aid should be on the top of our priority list, and we are speaking up , and we have credibility. I tell in some forums: right you are helping us, but we need more, and at the same time, we defend you, and your forces .. your sons who carrying your citizenships are among these terrorists, so help us. We make an effort to get more assistance, and we are not in the hearts of others, and when you come negligible! We do not hesitate to be criticized, and speak openly The Jordanian army exists on the border between Anbar and Jordan, and the other side ,Saudi Foreign Ministry dealt positively to replace the Saudi ambassador Assabhan. What about the new in the Iraqi-Saudi relations? Minister Al -Jaafari: As for Jordan, in the last meeting with His Majesty the King, He stressed his support for Iraq, and said: We are ready to coordinate with you, and we have closely monitored the movement of some groups on land that leads to Iraq. We can say: no fear from Jordanian borders. With regard to Saudi Arabia, we have made an extraordinary effort in order to open a Saudi embassy in Baghdad, and there was a direct conversation with His Majesty the late King, and with His Majesty the current king, and we were happy, and we were able to overcome the obstacle drop to something new called the diplomatic exchange and relationship, and its not in the shade. with regards to the Brother Assabhan, many statements has issued which was not fit to be released from him, and we gave signals, and then we summoned Mr. Sabhan to the ministry of foreign affairs, and he gave his word , and he notified many times, but he did not commit, and I spoke -too- with Brother Foreign Minister with the presence of Assabhan in the United Nations, and finally we wrote a letter to the Saudi ministry of foreign affairs regarding the keenness of interest of Iraq to the continuation of the relationship with Saudi Arabia and to be upgrade it to a higher level and the exchange, we ask you to replace the current ambassador, so they pulled him, and assigned a chargé de' affairs, and we hope they assign new ambassador .. was said to be assigned, but I did not know his name yet. We are working according to the principle of the relationship .. We want a relationship with Turkey, do not want to cut off the relationship with them, and can not accept the violation of Iraqi sovereignty by Turkey, and reject the violation, and we refuse to intervene, but we adhere to the origin of the relationship .. there is no contradiction. We do not accept that our sovereignty to be violated by anyone, whether Saudi Arabia or Turkey, or any of the neighboring countries without exception. the same issue of Mr. Assabhan was ambassador here, it has become a historical issue, and actually now a charge de 'affairs represents Saudi Arabia in the hope that new ambassador of Saudi Arabia to come to the embassy in Baghdad. What are the latest developments of negotiations between Iraq and OPEC ? .. Is Iraq would agree to cut production, even slightly? Minister Al-Jaafari: Iraq discussed this issue, and gave its number, and there is an understanding in the atmosphere of OPEC, political relations will perform a significant role, and as you know, the economy, security and politics are linked organically with each other. Iraq is now going through an exceptional circumstance, and pays for the defense bill for the whole world the existence of terrorism on his territories; so it's not for him , except to make up for increasing his oil production. There is a relatively understanding, and efforts are being made, and we will continue efforts to Count Iraq is an exceptional case. If the dispute escalated with the Turkish government what the fate of the Iraqis living there? Minister Al-Jaafari :we can observe the equation accurately, as of our relationship side .. we want to preserve it with Turkey; for the interests we have with them, and for the benefits the geographical proximity and for community overlapping. The Iraqi community in any country to reside, and to any country journeyed I enjoy the thing named the "Iraqi presence" in that country who I can consider them as social ambassadors of Iraq everywhere. The Iraqis reputation abroad is very impressive compared to other communities .. specialty ratios, and respect for the law, and avoid committing crimes, legal disobedience, and when I was an opponent, I saw it in various countries around the world that I was wandering in, and now I'm part of the governance and still see this merit among the Iraqi community . We want to dissociate the question that there would be pressure on the Iraqis abroad because we are now in exceptional circumstances, otherwise the country is their country, and we are day after day looking forward their return, and we pray to God to help us to overcome this ordeal, even the Sons of Iraq back unharmed and victorious, and to contribute to the rebuilding of Iraq . The Iraqi government announced its approval of the presence of advisers from various countries to give consultations to Iraqi forces in the battle of liberating Mosul, but some media reports mentioned the presence of ground troops outside the framework that agreed upon, particularly by the US side, is this true? Minster Al-Jaafari: the agreement that we signed restricted to consultants only, but warned in more than a speech, and at the same time that we have agreed to bring in consultants only without building any military bases, or bringing any other military ground forces, but Iraqi military land administration in the Iraqi field is pure Iraqi. In the range of consultants Yes, its open .. the best of my knowledge .. we need the military consultants , and we are present from various Iraqi conditions of countries in the world, and they are taking an Iraqi visa permit, and no one entered Iraq without our knowledge, only an exceptional situation of our brothers the Turks, otherwise every countries of the world committed to us . The only issue is made of Iraqi ministry of foreign affairs in Sept, 2014 is the consultants and nothing more. Are the Iraqi government will remain committed to the diplomatic option to resolve the crisis, the Turkish presence in Iraq? Minister Al-Jaafari: the ministry of foreign affairs is an Iraqi Ministry of diplomacy, its not the ministry of defense, and not a military shaped ministry, and its not a ministry for a muscles showing , its depends on principle of dialogue. By the way, the diplomatic speech if it did not become more courageous than the military in the field, it should be not less than the courage. While you chants with your speech, and speak truthfully, and convey your voice to others, remind your demands with confidence, and you speak for the whole of your people without you provoked, this is a kind of courage. We will remain adhere to diplomatic speech, but if a counterparty wanted to cross the lines, it lies on the jurisdiction of other ministries, and it will need to a political decision .. Wars is a result of failed political decisions, and successful politician who does not involve his people in a war, and the most successful political war when the state got involved working to extinguish it .. There is no clean war, a dirty war. All wars are dirty, and all the nations of the world, which fought the midst of war and bloodshed and killing, but a person may be forced to defend the sovereignty of his country. We are a constitutional state has its own constitution, and the decision of war, and the decision of defense is to be contributed by the parliament, government, and public opinion, and civil society organizations, as now gave the speech in the convergence of different vocabulary on Iraq the strength in demand. When we fail – God for bid- and I hope that we can not fail to achieve our goals through diplomatic means. So we let the competent channels, and the competent organs to exercise its role in maintaining the sovereignty of Iraq, and to achieve its objectives. You discussed with E.U. states the participation of the popular mobilization in the battle to liberate Nineveh .. Is there are any reactions occurred from the European Union? Minister Al-Jaafari: Some questions we put to the initiative raised nearly. We say: the Iraqi security forces with all its components: the army, the popular mobilization, and the Peshmerga, and the sons of the tribes, and sometimes no, its not an initiative but a response to those who ask about the situation of the popular mobilization. We tell him frankly: the popular mobilization is a phenomenon of Iraq, and its an Iraqi affair, and they defend the dignity and sovereignty of Iraq, its an Iraqi issue. but the right of a counterparty to ask, and inquire, and we have to answer with sincerity and credibility over the situation of the popular mobilization. I am in more than one location I mentioned the role of the popular mobilization, and focused on that faction is an Iraqi phenomenon and its not in isolation from the overall situation experienced by the peoples of the world, just as I mentioned that France helped America's freedom from the British in 1775 to 1784 wasn’t an American war of liberation? and contributed to Italy, France without a country ?! Why popular mobilization responds to the call of Al-Marjeaa? , which is not racially divided , ie: not Arab, and Turkmen, in other words, its not a Sunni or Shiite, nor religion, which they Muslim, but it is a national and popular phenomenon responded to the national need which it is pushing Daesh gangsters risks. When the popular mobilization arrived to the battle field, they made a turn in the performance along with the rest of the security forces. Bearing in mind that the first martyr fallen among the popular mobilization was one of our Sunni brothers. When the Iraqi security forces entered to Fallujah for the purpose of liberation, there was a popular mobilization from Fallujah, a local mobilization, and so in every city where intervention opens the doors for volunteerism. How do you evaluate the international diplomatic efforts in putting an end to the Turkish intervention in Iraq? Minister Al-Jaafari: as an Iraqi citizen is less than what I expect, but when I look at the contradictions ,and conduct a comparison between what we started to what we finished , I find it –Thanking God- its progressing steadily. Even the Turkish party asserts: we will leave and no fear of our existence; which means that is their accuse is weak .. This is because of the wisdom that Iraq is treated by the and the government, thanks to the International, regional response together. How do you read the presence of an Arabic consensus in the history of the Arab League to reject the Turkish intervention? How Turkey will read it? As long as our request is legal, we are confident of ourselves, we always ask this request, and we transmit the voice of Iraq, and our voice to the world, our cause is strong, and I think the response is excellent, if not unprecedented.