[size=36]Al-Kazemi: Iraq will not be a starting point for any attack on Saudi Arabia .. We will continue to fight corruption[/size]
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, the Iraqi Prime Minister, Mustafa Al-Kazemi, stressed the importance of the Arab presence in his country, noting that the Saudi presence "will play a major role in the stability of the region and Iraq."
During a meeting with a number of journalists on the sidelines of his visit to Riyadh, late on Wednesday evening, Al-Kazemi praised Saudi Arabia's experience in its relations with his country "for its concern for Iraq and its stability." He said, "I am completely certain that the Saudi presence on the economic level, political cooperation and exchange of views will play a major role in the stability of the region and Iraq." He pointed to "overcoming obstacles" in Baghdad's foreign relations, explaining: "We succeeded in transforming into a country that has excellent relations with Europe, America, Iran and Turkey, and excellent relations with Saudi Arabia."
He stressed that Saudi Arabia "has a real presence in the Iraqi conscience ... I always remember the example of Basra between Saudi Arabia and Iraq, and what I witnessed when it hosted a football match with the Saudi national team, and the chants encouraged the Saudi team." Regarding trade exchange with the opening of a new Arar port between the two countries, he said that the Kingdom "has experience in terms of investments in trade, agriculture and industry ... and the ambition is to have trade exchange with Saudi Arabia at levels and numbers that serve the peoples of the two countries and serve the budgets of Riyadh and Baghdad."
Regarding the media situation, he said: "Unfortunately, (whenever) someone shouted with a sectarian statement, it gives the impression that this is the general atmosphere in Iraq, and this is not correct ... The atmosphere in Iraq is tolerant and ready for integration." Regarding the challenges facing his government, Al-Kazemi referred to "the problems in the regions of criminal groups who bear arms who pose a threat," stressing the efforts "to neutralize armed groups outside the framework of the state." He said, "There is a group of enthusiastic youth in Iraq who wants to fight uncontrolled weapons, in a way that leads to Saddam or civil war, and this we will not allow it."
Al-Kazemi pledged to continue his anti-corruption campaign, pointing out that "since its arrival, the government has established a committee to combat corruption ... and succeeded in controlling it." He pointed out that "mismanagement created a kind of lack of development plans" in his country. He pointed out that the drop in oil prices "produced a real crisis, and everyone expected that the government would collapse ... Then it was the Corona epidemic, which posed another challenge." When asked about the strategic dialogue with America, and the possibility that there will be a complete withdrawal of US forces from Iraq, he replied that the goal of the strategic dialogue with the United States is to "rearrange Iraqi-American relations."
And he indicated that "Iraq has gone through the experience of the war against (ISIS) that has ended ... and it does not need American combat forces, but it is in dire need of US intelligence cooperation, and it is desperate to help our forces in training and raising their efficiency and combat capabilities."
As for the relationship with the Kurdistan region, he believed that it "is going through its golden age now, despite all the challenges." He said: “I have lived with all the Kurdish leaders since the eighties ... and I was one of the young people who fought with the Kurds, and I have a historical relationship with President Masoud Barzani and with the Prime Minister of the region, Masrour Barzani, who is my brother, and I have an excellent historical relationship with the President of the Republic, Dr. Barham Salih, and he is An ally and a friend, and the relationship with the region we are working to overcome ».
In response to a question about political stability and when it will be achieved in Iraq, Al-Kazemi said, "The challenges are difficult and Iraq still faces challenges, including the issue of weapons." He stressed that his country is "a product of difficult circumstances," noting that the regimes that were previously called "progressive" have reached civil wars, as happened in Syria, Libya and Iraq, "and that is what hurts and bleeds the heart."
He added: “Iraq has gone through exceptional cases since 1958 until now, culminating in blood in the streets ... and another situation was produced in 1968 among the Iraqis themselves, then the Iraq-Iran war, as well as the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait by Saddam Hussein of a peaceful neighboring country like Kuwait, and from Then what happened in the circumstances of Iraq from harsh sanctions ended the middle class ».
He considered that "Iraq is the country with the most experience in wars ... and there is a characteristic (focus) on the religious phenomenon in Iraqi society, and religious parties bear it, and Saddam Hussein bears it." He explained that "there is a phenomenon that Saddam carried out that offended the Islamic religion, when he launched a faith campaign to escape his defeat in the Kuwait War, and changed the national concept to religious, in order to exploit religion in a way that is far from the lofty goals."
He pointed out that what happened after 2003 and "the circumstances of loss of confidence produced a fragile political system, sectarian warfare, insecurity and inequality among the people", which led to "absurd wars that made Iraqis live displaced, refugees or absentees."
In a different session, Al-Kazemi confirmed yesterday to the French press that his country will not become a launching pad for any attack on Saudi Arabia.
Regarding an unknown armed group claiming responsibility for a drone attack targeting Riyadh, Al-Kazemi said that what the armed group had declared was "incorrect", stressing that the attack was not launched from Iraq.
He added, "As for the talk about attacks from Iraq, there were no attacks," considering that "there are attempts by some to bring accusations to harm relations."