Qatar and the Kurdistan region aim to increase their bilateral relations and work together to reduce the tensions in the region according to statements released by Kurdish officials.
Qatar’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim al-Thani, was received by the Kurdistan Region’s Deputy Prime Minister Qubad Talabani at Erbil International Airport on Wednesday evening.
The Qatari official arrived from Baghdad, where he had met with the Iraqi President, Prime Minister and Speaker of the Parliament.
The visit comes at a time when Iraq is on the edge of becoming a battlefield for US-Iran tensions, subject to recent missile attacks on military bases by both countries.
The Qatari foreign minister met with President of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Nechirvan Barzani on Wednesday to discuss options to reduce the tension in the region, as well as improving trade and business relations between Qatar and the Kurdistan Region.
The KRG Presidency released a statement following the meeting, pledging to “restore stability” to Iraq and develop relations with the Gulf state.
“We will take all the possible steps to restore stability in Iraq, and we refuse to let Iraq become a battlefield in order to finalize the differences in the region,” the statement read.
The Qatari foreign minister also showed an interest in developing the relations between the Kurdistan Region and Qatar.
“We look at the Kurdistan region as an important element in reducing the tension in the region, since [it] plays a great role in mitigating the tension in Iraq,” the statement added.
The foreign minister is in Erbil with a team of Qatari investors to invest more in the Kurdistan region and develop bilateral relations between the two states.
A meeting was also held with KRG Prime Minister Masrour Barzani to discuss trade relations and the role of both countries in reducing the tension in Iraq.
“Following recent regional instability, both sides called on the immediate de-escalation of tensions and for all parties to preserve peace and security in the Middle East,” read a statement released by the KRG.
Barzani informed the Qatari envoy that “renewed conflict and instability will undo the significant progress achieved in the reconstruction of Iraq.”
The Qatari envoy praised the KRG for its efforts in promoting economic growth and stability, according to the statement.
“The Qatari envoy also expressed his country’s desire to strengthen bilateral relations with the Kurdistan Region, particularly in relation to trade,” it concluded.
Qatar showed readiness to open a consulate in Erbil back in September 2019.