Monday 25 February 2019

Head of Foreign Relations begins week-long visit to Washington

Washington, DC, USA ( - Head of the Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) Department of Foreign Relations, Minister Falah Mustafa, is in Washington this week to meet with senior US government officials and members of Congress to update them on a variety of issues of interest related to Kurdistan, Iraq and the United States.

On his first day, Minister Mustafa and KRG Representative to the United States Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman met several senior administration officials at the Department of State.

In a meeting with Acting Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs David Satterfield (pictured) and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Iran and Iraq Andrew Peek, Minister Mustafa updated the US officials on the KRG government formation, relations between Erbil and Baghdad and the challenges facing both governments. He also discussed the need for all parties to remain focused on the next phase of the fight against ISIS to ensure its lasting defeat, emphasizing the US partnership with Kurdistan and Iraq.

Minister Mustafa also met Assistant Secretary for Conflict and Stabilization Operations Denise Natali; Deputy Assistant Secretary for Population , Refugees, and Migration Richard Albright; and Iraq Affairs Director Robert Waller.

He highlighted the needs of the refugee and displaced community and the obstacles to the minorities’ return to their homes.

Minister Mustafa and Representative Abdul Rahman also met with Commissioners and staff from the US Commission on International Religious Freedom. They discussed the KRG’s efforts to maintain a tolerant and pluralistic society in Kurdistan, and a number of specific issues facing religious and ethnic minority groups in Iraq.

The Minister kicked off his visit with a meeting with the KRG Representation office to outline the current situation and KRG priorities. 

This is the first visit of a senior KRG official to Washington in 2019.