Iraqi Civil Society Solidarity Initiative

The Iraqi Civil Society Solidarity Initiative (ICSSI) is dedicated to bringing together Iraqi and international civil societies through concrete actions to build together another Iraq, with peace and Human Rights for all.

Original photograph copyright: World Economic Forum / Benedikt von Loebell.

Davos Forum – Iraq PM al-Sudani

At the Davos 54th World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting, held from January 15 to 19, 2024, and dedicated to “Rebuilding Trust”, Iraq’s Prime Minister Mohammed Shia Al-Sudani met leaders from all over the world to discuss the four main topics of the meetings: from geopolitical conflicts and climate change to energy related issues, the role of artificial intelligence, employment and growth.

However, reports also mentioned that Al-Sudani intended to hold meetings discussing international cooperation with the Iraqi government. To that regard, what should definitely be highlighted is the interview on stage by John Harris, the global editor-in-chief of Politico, to Al Sudani.

In fact, during the interview, the Iraq PM reviewed opportunities for cooperation in economic fields, such as the partnership and enlargement policies on the oil sector, among other topics. He mentioned the transitioning period Iraq is living from a solely oil and carbon based economy – which has been labelled as shortcoming and counterproductive, to a diversification of sources heading at a modernization of the Iraqi economy towards clean energy and renewable sources, aiming at promoting an integration in its economy.

To that regard, al-Sudani stated that Iraq is currently involved in groupgroups meetings and conferences together with the Gulf countries to promote environmental cooperation and address climate change-related consequences. Furthermore, he explained the dramatic situation of Iraq, in terms of environmental issues, as one the most affected countries of the region, hit by drought, desertification as well as scarcity of water.

Even though several meetings on economic growth, employment and environment have been held, al-Sudani seized the opportunity to share key points on military, security and defense matters. The Prime Minister, indeed, pleaded Iraqi’s cause asking for a conclusion of the US-led coalition mission in Iraq which would foster a stabilization of the relationships between states parties to the mission and Iraq itself.

Likewise, al-Sudani explained the next planned steps in that regard, which the Government brought forward to the Parliament. According to its plan, the Iraqi Government is staunchly decided to carry out a dialogue with those countries part to the International Coalition to plan how to positively conclude the mission.

Taking into account his declarations, in fact, the main rationale for the mission to be deployed in Iraq territories was related to contrasting Da’esh. Given the shrinking role the terrorist organization is currently having, apart from few individuals or small groups hiding on mountains, al-Sudani explained how the security forces are getting all this under control.

Today, according to all testimonies of experts in Iraq, ISIS doesn’t pose a threat to the Iraqi state, he said. Thus, ending western troops presence in Iraq is crucial for the country’s stability and security.

In connection to this matter, however, tensions raised in the past weeks among western troops and Iran-backed Shia militias. In fact, the United States has conducted several attacks by striking Iran-backed armed groups holding them as liable for drones and missiles launched from Iraq and Syria, where the strikes targeted three facilities occupied by Iranian-backed Kataib Hezbollah and other Tehran-affiliated groups in Iraq.

Moreover, Iraq’s Harakat al-Nujaba movement promised a “targeted retaliation” by mentioning that “these crimes will not go unpunished”. The movement mentioned as well that these US violations need to be stopped by “a firm official position from the Iraqi government”.

On the other side, the Iraqi government reported how the militias’ attacks are to be considered as terrorist acts, while the US strikes against those militias represents an infringement to Iraq sovereignty. Anyhow, the US maintains several military bases in Iraq used by it and its allies to fight the Islamic State, even though the Iraqi government does not accept any external influence or interference in Iraqi affairs. In that regard, Al-Sudani is aware the Middle East region has an impact on the world.At last, the Iraq PM also tooktook also some minutes to explain Iraqi’s position on the war on Gaza, explaining that countries keep ignoring a clear signal: the Palestinian cause to have a state. He highlighted how the Israel-Palestine conflict is a long time issueissues which just degenerated in October, making clear that the international institutions have failed in addressing this relevant issue, since Israel has ignored every UN Security Council’s resolutions or decisions which have been adopted during decades.