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German Defense Minister in Erbil

German Defense Minister in Erbil

On 20 August, German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer and her accompanying parliamentary delegation visited Erbil to meet with senior KRG officials. It was the first trip abroad for the newly appointed Minister, also travelling to Jordan and Iraq.

KRG’s Head of Foreign Relations, Minister Safeen Dizayee, welcomed Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer and her accompanying parliamentary delegation to Kurdistan. In their meeting Minister Dizayee thanked the Defense Minister for the continued support and cooperation with German military.

In the next meeting the Minister of the Interior, Rebar Ahmed, stressed the importance of international support: “Our plea to the international community and to Germany: Strengthen your presence in the Region, because ISIS is still a major threat.” In a JCC (Joint Crisis Coordination Center) presentation, the refugee and IDP situation in the Region was brought closer to the German Ministers attention. During Minister Kramp-Karrenbauers visit, Peshmerga Minister Shorish Ismael held a joint press conference, expressing that the Islamic State continues to pose a security threat in the Region and noting that “the terrorist group is in the process of reorganizing its forces.” Adding to the training of Kurdish soldiers, Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer stated: “We have completed the first phase of training the Peshmerga forces, and we will continue with the second phase, which is the training of trainers.”

German Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer also took some time out of her schedule to meet with two NGOs in Erbil, called „Emma“ and „Hawar Help“. Representatives of the organisations talked about their own fates and the numerous women still in captivity by the IS.