UK ‘longstanding friend’ of Kurdistan Region, says new envoy
ERBIL (Kurdistan24) – The United Kingdom is a “longstanding friend” of the Kurdistan Region, the newly inaugurated British diplomat in Erbil told Kurdistan24 on Sunday.
The remarks by the UK Consul General James Goldman, who was inaugurated in the position in late January this year, came during a tour to the ancient Erbil Citadel and Machko tea house along with Erbil Governor Omed Khoshnaw early Sunday.
The UK is a “really longstanding friend” of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI) and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), Consul General Goldman told Kurdistan24’s Hero Mawloodee at Erbil Citadel.
The mission works towards “furthering that amazing relationship,” Goldman added.
The UK Consulate General in Erbil on Jan. 21 officially announced Goldman as its new Consul General, replacing his predecessor Rosy Cave.
‘Blown away by culture’
The diplomat has visited numerous Kurdistan Region provinces, including Sulaimani, Duhok and Halabja recently.
“I have been blown away by both the culture [and] the historical tradition,” he said, expressing his love for Kurdish dishes that he had recently had.
The diplomat also applauded the Region’s hospitality and warm welcome following his arrival to Iraq’s Kurdish region.
Exhibit two in the case for the KRI’s unparalleled cuisine. Huge thanks to the Governor of Erbil, Omed Khoshnaw, for taking me today to two legendary spots. Kabab Yassin and chaixanay Mam Khalil. Amazing! 🫖 🍽️😍😋 #TwitterKurds https://t.co/M7kPRJKYWQ pic.twitter.com/1VTuuDaKk4— James Goldman (@JamesGoldmanUK) February 11, 2024
London eyes to grow its cultural ties with Erbil and is cooperating with the KRG in the field of preserving cultural heritage, Goldman said.
Through its British Council, the UK is supporting the young Kurdish artists and talents, he added.
London and Erbil enjoy close diplomatic and economic ties. Nearly 200 British companies currently work in the Kurdistan Region in various fields.
As an integral part of the Coalition against ISIS, the UK has provided training and air support to the Kurdish Peshmerga forces in the fight against the terror group whose caliphate was toppled in 2017.
Additional reporting by Kurdistan24 Erbil reporter Hero Mawloodee