vendredi 21 juin 2013

Statement by EU High Representative Catherine Ashton following her visit to Iraq

EUROPEA/ U/IO/ Brussels, 18 June 2013

A 329/13

Statement by EU High Representative Catherine Ashton

following her visit to Iraq

The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice

President of the Commission issued the following statement today:

"During my visit to Iraq, I met in Baghdad with Prime Minister Maliki, Speaker of the Council of

Representatives "ujaifi, Deputy Prime Minister Shahristani and Foreign Minister Zebari and I also

travelled to Erbil where I met with the President and Prime Minister of the Kurdistan Region.

I stressed that Iraq’s democracy and stability are important not only for Iraq itself but for the whole

region. I welcomed recent efforts to ease tension and called on all parties to work together to

address political and governance issues through dialogue. I encouraged the consolidation of

democratic gains through strong and efficient institutions – a key element in any democratic system.

I condemned the wave of attacks that has taken place in the recent weeks in many Iraqi cities, and I

extended my condolences to the families of the victims. The escalation of violence is a cause of

serious concern, and I encouraged all political forces to create a strong and common front against

all forms of violence.

We also discussed the difficult regional context and in particular the negative impact on Iraq of the

Syrian crisis. I commended the recent efforts to agree outstanding issues between Iraq and Kuwait.

I was also pleased to sign the agreement to make available 4 million euros of EU financing to fund

the EU-Iraq Energy Centre.

The EU has consistently supported Iraq’s democratic transition and will continue to stand

alongside the country to help it meet the challenges that it faces. The EU wants Iraq to be an

important political and economic partner and looks forward to further strengthening bilateral ties,

notably on the basis of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement that we signed last year." _____________

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