At the invitation of President Emmanuel Macron, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Iraq, Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, visited Paris on 19 October 2020. This visit, which followed a visit by President Macron to Bagdad on 2 September 2020, provided an opportunity to reaffirm the deep ties of friendship that bind France and Iraq and the importance of the French-Iraqi strategic partnership.
During their discussions, President Macron and Prime Minister Al-Kadhimi stressed the need to pursue efforts to combat terrorism. President Macron reiterated France’s full engagement within the International Coalition against Daesh and his wish to continue to develop a bilateral defence relationship with Iraq. Prime Minister Al-Kadhimi condemned the murder of Samuel Paty and expressed his solidarity with France in its fight against terrorism.
President Macron hailed the continuation of the Iraqi Government’s proactive action. He expressed his support for the measures taken by Prime Minister Al-Kadhimi to put an end to the unacceptable attacks against diplomatic compounds in Iraq in recent weeks.
President Macron welcomed the rehabilitation of the operating theatre of the Sinjar healthcare centre and the upcoming launch of work to build a new hospital in Sinjar. He also stated that France would renew its contribution in 2020 to mine clearance efforts of the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) in Iraq, whose projects are critical in ensuring the return of displaced civilian populations to their home regions. President Macron announced that France was going to contribute €1 million to the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) which provides electoral assistance to Iraqi institutions in organizing the early general elections announced by Prime Minister Al-Kadhimi.
President Macron and Prime Minister Al-Kadhimi agreed to continue their efforts to mobilize Iraq’s international and regional partners around an initiative supporting its stability and its security.
The two leaders took stock of recent progress of the French-Iraqi partnership. They commended the signing of a letter of intent between Alstom and the Iraqi Ministry of Transport on the project to build an above-ground metro line in Bagdad. They also welcomed recent progress of projects to rehabilitate and extend electricity grids, led by General Electric France and Schneider Electric. They commended the signing of a letter of intent on French-Iraqi cooperation in the agriculture and agrifood sector. This visit also provided an opportunity to sign a memorandum between the Iraqi Ministry of Higher Education and the Conference of University Presidents with a view to developing Iraqi research capacities.