Monday, 22 January 2018 06:28 GMT
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Italy PM reaffirms Europe's support to Iraq

(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) Visiting Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi on Wednesday warned against cessation of democracy in Iraq in case of lack of Europe's support to drag the country out of a circle of violence.

Renzi had talks here with Iraqi President Fuad Maasoum, Prime Minister-designate Haider Al-Abadi and outgoing Premier Nour Al-Maliki.
During his meeting with Maasoum, Renzi reflected a deep desire to enhance cooperation with Iraq in the "fateful war against terrorism."

He said Rome is ready to offer all forms of humanitarian and military support to Baghdad, according to a presidential statement issued in the Iraqi capital.

"Not only is this a struggle with Iraq, but with Europe as well," the Italian Prime Minister said, in reference to the brutal attacks by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) targeting minorities in Northern Iraq.

"You are not alone, and we won't turn our face away from you," he said, underlining the high concern by Italy and the European Union (EU) states over the war Iraq is having against terrorism, which is a menace to the world.

He revealed that the EU is planning a second meeting in support of Iraq by the end of the month, in addition to a similar meeting for the NATO.

For his part, the Iraqi president said that balances are changing in the country following the support by the EU and the US in the war against terrorism.

Maasoum stressed that terrorism is a danger to all Iraqis, even if it focusing now on Christians and Yazidis. He urged the international community for more cooperation with Baghdad to repel ISIL and other terrorist groups.

In his meeting with Al-Abadi, Renzi urged drawing up a strategy to drag Iraq out of the current circle of violence.

A statement issued by the Prime Minister-designate office aid that Renzi and Al-Abadi had discussed means of boosting bilateral relations, besides the security and political developments in the region.

Renzi said that he agreed with Al-Abadi that the coming Iraqi government should be "a grand coalition."

Earlier, the Italian Prime Minister had talks with the outgoing Prime Minister, Al-Maliki who stressed the necessity of promoting ties with Italy in all fields.

Al-Maliki expressed appreciation for Italy's support to the fight against terrorism and the humanitarian aid offered to the displaced in Northern Iraq.

Renzi who arrived in Baghdad earlier today on one-day visit, will also visit Iraqi Kurdistan where he will have talks with President Masoud Barzani.


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