Delivered By: His Excellency Mohamed Abushahab, Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative
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I thank the Special Representative, Ms. Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, for her thorough briefing. We are pleased to see the representative of Iraq participating in this meeting. We also listened closely to the briefing of Ms. Khanim Latif.
At the outset, we would like to welcome the visit of UN Secretary-General to Iraq last March, which demonstrated the continued international support for this country and its people. We stress the importance of the international community’s continued engagement with Iraq, especially at this stage in which the government is working to overcome the challenges of the past decades and make the necessary reforms to meet the needs of the Iraqi people.
In this context, we welcome the recent positive developments in Iraq, including reaching an agreement between Baghdad and Erbil to resume oil exports. We hope that in the next stage there will be progress towards addressing all unresolved issues between the two parties, including the adoption of the Federal Oil and Gas Law in order to support the oil and economy sectors in Iraq.
It is also important to complete the necessary steps for approving the Federal budget law, as it is closely linked to the country’s development. Regarding the parliamentary elections in the Kurdistan region and the upcoming provincial elections scheduled at the end of this year, we stress the importance of holding them in accordance with the specified timeline, while promoting the full, equal, and meaningful participation of women.
As for the security situation, we commend the relentless efforts to combat terrorism, which contributed to an unprecedented decrease in the frequency of attacks carried out by Da’esh in Iraq in the first quarter of this year. We emphasize the importance of continuing these efforts, especially as Da’esh persists in its widely condemned attacks against a number of Iraqi regions and security forces.
Regarding climate change, its repercussions constitute a major challenge for Iraq, especially in terms of its threat to long-term security and stability as well as its impact on numerous aspects of life. We commend the government’s leadership role in dealing with the impacts of climate change and the water crisis, particularly its initiative of hosting a climate conference and the recent 3rd Baghdad International Water Conference.
We also call for intensifying bilateral cooperation between Iraq and various countries in this regard, as well as continuing to work with UNAMI to address the environmental concerns in Iraq.
We believe that Iraq’s continued endeavors to restore its positive role in its Arab and wider regional environment is an important effort that will enhance engagement, dialogue, and build bridges to support stability in the region with relations based on good neighborliness. We also value Iraq’s broad participation in several regional frameworks and mechanisms aimed at supporting solutions to regional issues.
On the other hand, we hope that progress will be made on the issue of missing Kuwaitis and missing third-country nationals as well as the Kuwaiti archives. We welcome the decree issued by the Prime Minister of Iraq to establish a committee that will support activities aimed at locating missing persons. We appreciate these ongoing efforts, and we stress the importance of maintaining the ongoing cooperation between the two countries on this critical file until it is resolved in accordance with Security Council resolutions.
Within the framework of the upcoming renewal of UNAMI’s mandate, we affirm that the UAE is committed to working with the members of the Council and coordinating with Iraq to ensure an agreed upon text is reached that provides the support necessary to respond to Iraq’s current needs.
In conclusion, we renew our support for Iraq’s sovereignty, unity, and territorial integrity, as well as our rejection of any interference in its internal affairs. We reaffirm our solidarity with the Iraqi people in their quest for recovery and in their aspirations to build a better future filled with peace and prosperity. Thank you, Madam President.