DECEMBER 9, 2022
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Baghdad's Pledge to Dismantle Anti-Iran Groups Along the Border: Statement by Iraqi Foreign Minister

Baghdad's Pledge to Dismantle Anti-Iran Groups Along the Border: Statement by Iraqi Foreign Minister

In an official visit to Tehran on September 13th, Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein reiterated his country's dedication to a security pact with Iran aimed at disarming anti-Iran groups located in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region (IKR). During a joint press conference, Hussein stated, "Iraq is committed to the road map and is trying to reach the ultimate goal of disarming terrorist groups on the borders of Iran, moving some fighters to refugee camps under the supervision of the UN and the High Commissioner for Refugees."

He further emphasized that the security cooperation between Iraq and Iran is firmly grounded in the Iraqi constitution. Iran's Foreign Minister, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, expressed Iran's seriousness in safeguarding Iraq's national security and commended the progress being made in removing terrorist elements from the Iran-Iraq border, reflecting the strong bilateral and regional relations between the two nations.

Amir-Abdollahian warned against any delay in addressing this issue, highlighting that even an hour's delay could jeopardize the security of Iraq, Iran, and the Iraqi Kurdistan region. Prior to his visit to Tehran, Hussein announced that Iraq had initiated necessary measures to relocate armed groups from the border to camps within Iraqi Kurdistan, in accordance with the agreement between the two nations.

However, reports emerging from the Iraqi Kurdistan Region suggest that Baghdad may struggle to meet the September 19th deadline for disarming and relocating these groups, as the required camps have not been constructed. Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani stated unequivocally that the deadline would not be extended, emphasizing that the agreement had been reached with both the Iraqi government and IKR leadership.

For decades, Kurdish armed groups operating from Iraqi Kurdistan, notably the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI), have posed a threat to Iran's border security. The KDPI played a significant role in the 1979 Kurdish rebellion in Iran and received support from Saddam Hussein during the Iran-Iraq war.

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