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France to open diplomatic representation office in Erbil

MON, 24 SEP 2007 22:09 | KRG Cabinet

Falah Mustafa Bakir, Head of the KRG’s Department of Foreign Relations
Erbil, Kurdistan-Iraq (DFR, KRG.org) – The French Foreign Ministry has announced that it will expedite its efforts to open a diplomatic representation office in Erbil, capital of the Kurdistan Region. The announcement came during the three day visit to the Kurdistan Region of the French Ambassador to Iraq, Mr. Jean Francois Girault.

Falah Mustafa Bakir, Head of the KRG’s Department of Foreign Relations, welcomed the announcement saying, “The KRG is excited at the prospect of increased political, economic, and cultural ties with the French Republic. We view France’s new and enhanced interaction with our country, and the Middle East more generally, as a positive step forward.”

Ambassador Girault said, “We are happy to be opening this office in Erbil to strengthen our ties with the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and support the KRG’s ongoing development efforts.”

The opening of the diplomatic representation office will solidify the cordial and important relationship between the Kurdistan Region and France. It will also add to the French presence in the Region already well represented by the Arthur Rimbaud Cultural Center in Erbil’s citadel.

This positive step comes after the August meeting in Baghdad between KRG President Masoud Barzani and French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner. The Foreign Minister has been a long-term supporter of the Kurds, frequently speaking out against the previous regime.

During his three day trip Ambassador Girault met with President Masoud Barzani, Speaker of the Parliament Mr. Adnan Mufti, Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani, Deputy Prime Minister Omer Fatah, Minister of State for the Interior Mr. Karim Sinjari, Minister of Finance Mr. Sarkis Aghajan Mamando, Head of the Department of Foreign Relations Falah Mustafa Bakir, and members of the business and NGO communities.

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