French national day celebration highlights French-Kurdish relations
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – On July 14, several senior Kurdish officials attended France’s Bastille Day reception in Erbil, including the president of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), Masoud Barzani.
“On behalf of the KRG, I congratulated the people and Government of France, and reiterated our commitment to building on our strong historical and cultural bonds,” tweeted the head of the Foreign Relations Department of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), Safeen Dizayee on Thursday.
Pleased to join #Kurdistan Region leaders & others in celebrating #BastilleDay in Erbil. Congratulations to France and we appreciate France’s continued support to Kurdistan during challenging times pic.twitter.com/T1neCx0ulm— Safeen Dizayee (@SafeenDizayee) July 14, 2019
Moreover, on Thursday, Kurdistan Region President Nechirvan Barzani also congratulated the people of France and French President Emmanuel Macron on Fête Nationale Française.
“On this day, I would like to reiterate my commitment to further strengthening our ties and partnership with France. Bonne Fête Nationale!” he tweeted
In August, President Barzani congratulated Macron on his reelection.
In August 2021, the French president visited the Kurdistan Region, where the Kurdish leadership warmly welcomed him.
In his speech during the event, Dizayee highlighted the strong historical relationship between France and the Kurdistan Region, mentioning the support France gave the Kurds during difficult periods in the 1980s and 1990s.
For instance, the former French First Lady Danielle Mitterrand played a decisive role in urging world leaders to aid and protect the Kurdistan Region in 1991 from the Baath regime, earning her the title “mother of Kurds”.
Mitterrand, at that time, also visited the nearly two million Kurdish refugees who had fled a ferocious Iraqi assault to the Turkish and Iranian borders that year. Dizayee mentioned that this visit brought “comfort” to the Kurdish people.
“All of these are indications of the strength and strong bond between our nations,” he underlined.
He also praised the visits of former French presidents who visited the Kurdistan Region during the height of the fight against ISIS.
He also underlined the importance of the French Institute in Erbil and the cultural activities of the French consulate.
“All the activities of the French Institute are very important and very much valued. Therefore, we feel that a lot has been done with your cooperation and your support for our Peshmerga forces with international partners, it is very much appreciated,” he said.
“As the Kurdistan Regional Government we are certainly ready to continue this coordination.”
Merci à nos amis Kurdes, à nos partenaires internationaux et aux Français de Région du Kurdistan qui ont honoré de leur présence la célébration de la Fête nationale à Erbil. #14Juillet pic.twitter.com/YLe0kpgGKi— Olivier Decottignies (@O_Decottignies) July 15, 2022
In conclusion, the French Consul General in Erbil, Olivier Decottignies, thanked “Kurdish friends”, international partners, and French people for joining the National Day in Erbil in tweets in the Kurdish and French languages.