Hemen Hawrami presidential advisor visited Poland

Hemen Hawrami- Senior Assistant to President Masoud Barzani- paid an official visit in Poland at the invitation of Polish ministry of foreign affairs. One-week stay was plenty of important meetings and discussions about the situation in the Middle East and the future of Kurdistan.

Hemen Hawrami met with Joanna Wronecka deputy minister of foreign affairs. Presidential advisor desribed current situation on the frontline of war against ISIS, spoke about relations between Kurdistan Regional Government and central Iraqi government. Hawrami also inform about the decision of organizing independence referendum which was made with the acceptance of the most important political parties in Kurdistan.

Kurdish delegation had also a series of meeting with representatives of Polish parliament, Africa and Middle East Department at ministry of foreign affairs as well as think-tanks: Pulaski Foundation, the Polish Institute of International Affairs, the Centre for Eastern Studies. Hemin Hawrami also visited headquarters of Polish Humanitarian Action to express gratitude for involvement of Polish humanitarian organizations in aid to refugees in Kurdistan.

The second aim of Hawrami’s visit was Krakow and Malopolska Region. Presidential advisor met with Grzegorz Lipiec- member of the Board of the Malopolska Region. He also gave a lecture at the Jagiellonian University about the situation in Kurdistan Region and the Middle East in the presence of the head of the Institute of Oriental Studies, Dean of the Faculty of Philology and many students. Senior assistant of Kurdish president also visited State Museum Auschwitz-Birkenau.

At the end of the stay, KRG Representation in Poland organized in its headquarters press conference attended by journalists from the biggest Polish TV stations, daily newspapers, weekly magazines and websites. The event began with Hemen Hawrami’s speech. He summed up his visit to Poland, recalling the Polish side’s interest in developing relations with Kurdistan and then briefed on the situation in the Middle East and Kurdistan, particularly highlighting two themes: the ongoing war against ISIS and the key role of the Peshmerga in defeating terrorists, as well as the upcoming Kurdistan referendum of independence.

The presidential advisor explained in details why Iraqi Kurds decided to hold the referendum: history has shown that no previous model of Kurdish existence within the frame of Iraq has passed the exam, the Baghdad authorities have not followed the Iraqi constitution in many important aspects and there is no indication that the Iraqi government will abandon the policy of subordinating the Kurds.

At the same time, Hawrami pointed out that the referendum does not imply an immediate proclamation of independence – it is only the beginning of long negotiations with Baghdad aimed at establishing a favorable and mutually beneficial separation (Hawrami recalled experience of dissolution of Czechoslovakia).

Hemin Hawrami also stressed that independent Kurdistan will not pose any threat to its neighbors nor claim a change of borders, on the contrary it will be a factor stabilizing Middle East. The Kurdish authorities have already held several rounds of talks with Baghdad, neighboring countries, countries of the region, European and world leaders.

After his speech, Hemin Hawrami responded to numerous questions from journalists, among others about the first reactions of Baghdad on the idea of a referendum, the exact date and area of voting, the relations with Turkey, the other parts of Kurdistan and the prospects for the ultimate defeat of ISIS.