French FM warns reconstruction in Iraq should not neglect any region or people
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – A French official on Tuesday affirmed France’s support and commitment to rebuild Iraq, stating that reconstruction efforts should be comprehensive.
During the International Conference for the Reconstruction of Iraq happening in Kuwait, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian warned that rebuilding Iraq would be an enormous and challenging undertaking, but voiced optimism in Iraq’s ability to recover and thrive thanks to its people and resources.
Le Drian believes that Iraq could achieve national reconciliation and start the process of reconstruction, but encouraged the focus to be on the social and humanitarian aspects of the work. He emphasized that the reconstruction process should be comprehensive and not exclude any one people or region in the country.
The statements followed the Kurdistan Region’s delegation expressing concerns at the conference that Baghdad concentrated all projects in the central and southern parts of Iraq, leaving only small projects for the autonomous region which had been at the forefront of the war against the Islamic State (IS).
Dozens of countries around the world have participated in the conference with the aim to invest and provide aid to the war-torn country.
The French official noted that France would provide soft loans to Iraq as well as contribute to the reconstruction of the country, namely in the fields of energy and water.
He added that following emergency humanitarian assistance and stability in Iraq, the country “must rely on a diversified economy through the private sector.”
“We believe we have received positive signals from the Iraqi government,” Le Drian said.
Editing by Nadia Riva