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IRAQI GOVERNMENT DELEGATION VISITS UK FOR TALKS

A delegation of Iraqi lawmakers, led by the Speaker of the Parliament, Mr Saleem Al Jabouri, visited London this week for talks with British business leaders and politicians.

The group visited the House of Lords, the UK’s Upper House, and met Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne, the UK Trade Envoy for Iraq and Executive Chairman of the Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC).

Later the delegation joined IBBC members and guests for lunch at the exclusive Royal Over-Seas League in London’s St James’.

Speaking at the event, Mr Al Jabouri, said the Iraqi Parliament was working hard every day to improve the country. He said the entire region had been badly affected by the war with ISIL (Islamic State) and he pleaded for international support.

Mr Al Jabouri said many people in Iraq were suffering because of the situation, with millions displaced, unable to live a “decent human life.” The Speaker said the situation left him extremely concerned for the future of young people in Iraq. The priority was to prevent them from being radicalised.

Turning to more positive things, Mr Al Jabouri said the Government was working hard on legislative reform, especially investment law. Changes that had been agreed by all sides of the political spectrum.

Baroness Nicholson complimented Mr Al Jabouri saying the speaker in the Iraqi Parliament played a much more important role than those in the UK and the United States.
The IBBC Chairman said all the organisation’s members valued Iraq and its market. She agreed that the new legislation was vital to encourage more foreign investment.

The Baroness thanked Vitol for sponsoring the lunch and also for the generous support they had given to the AMAR International Charitable Foundation – support that is now benefitting hundreds of thousands of IDPs in Iraq. She also thanked Zaha Hadid Architects for sponsoring a dinner at the House of Lords the previous evening.

The Iraqi delegation included Iraqi MPs, Dr Jaber Al Jaberi, Mr Ammar Obaid, Mrs Vian Dakheel, and Mr Hassan Al Bazoon. The Iraqi Ambassador, Dr Salih Ali and the First Secretary, Tania Hussain also attended.

Other guests included, Mr Jon Dean, the Head of the Iraq Team at the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Mr Mouzhan Majidi, Chief Executive of Zaha Hadid Architects, Mr Patrick Schumacher, a Partner at Zaha Hadid, Mr Christophe Michels, Chief Operating Officer of the IBBC, and Mr Richard Crow, Chief Executive of AMAR.

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