US Department of State note on meeting with Kurdistan Region delegation

MESOP – 13.4.2013 – Readout of Acting Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs Beth Jones’ meeting with Iraqi Kurdistan Region delegation.

Acting Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs Beth Jones met with a senior delegation from the Kurdistan Regional Government of Iraq at the State Department today to discuss U.S.-Iraq relations, especially the longstanding ties we share with the Iraqi Kurdistan Region and its people.

Acting Assistant Secretary Jones welcomed the Kurdish delegation and expressed the strong U.S. commitment to supporting the development of a sound, vibrant, and inclusive Iraq.  She underscored our commitment to the Strategic Framework Agreement, the basis for the United States’ partnership with a federal, democratic, and unified Iraq.  She reiterated U.S. support for an Iraqi Kurdistan Region within the framework of Iraq’s constitution.  Building on the Secretary’s recent trip to Iraq, the two sides discussed the importance of direct and continuous engagement by all of Iraq’s political parties to address outstanding issues, including appropriate division of authority between the central and regional government, equitable distribution of resources, and resolving internal boundary disputes pursuant to Article 140 of the Iraqi constitution.

To that end, the Acting Assistant Secretary noted she was encouraged that a Kurdish Alliance delegation arrived in Baghdad this week to discuss the importance of peaceful dialogue and partnership in resolving political disputes.  She further emphasized Secretary Kerry’s message that the United States remains committed to the vision of Iraq as defined in the Iraqi constitution, and is prepared to help Iraqi leaders resolve their differences peacefully and in a manner that benefits all the Iraqi people.