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NO:131 -;12 September 2007, Press release Regarding Certain Expressions Used by Mr. Hoshyar Zebari, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Iraq (Unofficial Translation)


Certain expressions used by Mr. Hoshyar Zebari, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Iraq, in an interview with a Turkish TV channel, do not seem to overlap with the developments that took place before and during the visit of Mr. Maliki, Prime Minister of Iraq, to Turkey, on August 7th.

The terrorist nature of the PKK/KONGRA-GEL was confirmed in the “Memorandum of Understanding” that was signed on 7 August 2007 by the Prime Ministers of the two countries during the visit of the Iraqi delegation headed by Prime Minister Maliki and in which Minister Zebari also was present.

The “Agreement on Combatting Terrorism” which is referred to in the signed Memorandum, is a draft which has been worked on since May 2006 between Our Government and the Government of Mr. Maliki, of which Hoshyar Zebari is a member, and was agreed upon to a great extent until the day of the visit. Therefore, the said draft Agreement cannot be considered as a fait accompli imposed on the Iraqi side.

Furthermore, the draft of the “Memorandum of Understanding on Combatting Terrorism and Organized Crime”, a text of technical nature and was envisaged to be signed during the visit, is a text drafted by the Iraqi Government itself and has been largely accommodated by us.

In light of the existing good neighborly relations between the two countries, Turkey expects the Iraqi Government to fulfill its internationally agreed commitements, first and foremost those that fall under United Nations Security Council Resolutions regarding the fight against terrorism and pursues the steps the Iraqi Government will take in this respect.