Rep. Rohrabacher Statement on Baghdad Meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister, CODEL not officially expelled from Iraq
Istanbul, Turkey, Jun 11, 2011 — Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) issued the following statement on his recent meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki while in Baghdad as part of an official Congressional delegation:
“We had a frank and spirited discussion about the Camp Ashraf massacre by Iraqi troops,” said Rohrabacher. “There was never any indication the Prime Minister was angered by having this discussion or the during the portion of the conversation about the current economic situation in the U.S., which lead to the suggestion of repayment by the Iraqis.
The meeting was originally scheduled for an hour but continued for an extra 40 minutes.
“No apologies are necessary for suggesting the massacre of unarmed civilians by Iraqi troops is something that needs to be investigated and I plan to do so as Chairman of the House Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee,” said Rohrabacher.
“Furthermore, I will not apologize for suggesting once Iraq becomes prosperous, it should consider repaying the United States for the hundreds of billions of dollars spent to liberate them from a tyrannical dictator and helping to establish a democratic government,” Rohrabacher continued. “There’s nothing wrong with suggesting that the people who have benefited from our benevolence should consider repaying us for what we have given them.”
In response to media reports the delegation had been expelled from Iraq , Mr. Rohrabacher said, “There was no change in our scheduling while we were in Iraq. Our itinerary remained exactly the same and we departed as scheduled.
“We were not officially told to leave the country before we left and were never told or warned not to come back.”
On May 26th, Rep. Rohrabacher announced his intention of conducting a hearing into the April 8th massacre at Camp Ashraf in eastern Iraq where 35 unarmed civilians were killed and scores more injured during an attack by Iraqi soldiers. Mr. Rohrabacher’s request for delegation access to the site was denied by the U.S. State Department and the Iraqi government.
111TH CONGRESS 1ST SESSION H. RES. 873 Establishing a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
OCTOBER 27, 2009
Mr. ROHRABACHER (for himself and Mr. DAVIS of Tennessee) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs
Establishing a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.
Whereas 15 countries including leading European nations have diplomatic and consulate representation in Erbil, the capital of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq;
Whereas the United States Department of State modified its Travel Warning for Iraq this year to reflect the relative safety and security of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq;
Whereas the establishment of a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq is consistent with current United States policy to normalize bilateral United States- Iraq relations at the diplomatic, commercial, cultural, and educational levels as the United States Armed Forces redeploys from Iraq;
Whereas greater United States Government civilian representation throughout Iraq, including in the Kurdistan Region, will serve the United States interest during this period of military transition across the country;
Whereas the establishment of a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq will increase travel between the United States and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and thus strengthen people-to-people exchanges between both sides;
Whereas presently, United States citizens either living in or visiting the Kurdistan Region must travel to the United States Embassy in Baghdad, 200 miles away, to receive consular services;
Whereas the establishment of a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region will both be helpful in attracting greater United States business and investment to the region and ensuring that the region continues to serve as a ‘‘gateway’’ to United States business success in other parts of Iraq, as a number of United States Government agencies have advocated;
Whereas the establishment of a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region will demonstrate a United States commitment to maintaining and building upon the success and stability of this prosperous and democratic Iraqi region;
Whereas the establishment of a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq will allow more government and nongovernmental missions between the United States and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, a mutual interest;
Whereas the Kurds of Iraq have been willing partners with the United States in the democratic transition in Iraq since 2003 and the Kurdistan Region has served as a model of Iraq’s democratization since Operation Iraqi Freedom;
Whereas the United States and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) have been full partners in the battle against terrorism and those who seek to undermine continued progress in a pluralistic, democratic, and federal Iraq;
Whereas the establishment of a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq will play a helpful role in continuing to safeguard Iraq’s territorial integrity from external aggression and support United States and Iraqi diplomatic initiatives that seek to prevent outside interference in Iraq’s affairs;
Whereas the establishment of a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq will also foster continued dialogue at a strategic level between the United States and the KRG; and
Whereas the establishment of a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq will positively contribute to continued diplomatic initiatives between the KRG and Turkey: Now, therefore, be it
1 Resolved, That the House of Representatives calls on 2 the Department of State to establish a United States Consulate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.
Last edited on 09/23/2011 at 00:17 AM (UTC3 Assyria)
Iraq govt says U.S. Congress delegation "not welcome" by Reuters. Jun 10, 2011.
BAGHDAD, June 10, 2011 (Reuters) — Iraq said on Friday a visiting U.S. Congress delegation was "not welcome" in the country, citing reports its leader called on Baghdad to pay compensation to Washington for years of war since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion. Iraqi officials said Republican congressman Dana Rohrabacher told reporters during a visit on Friday that Baghdad should repay billions of dollars Washington had spent on the Iraq war.
Officials at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad could not be reached for comment and the congressman's comments could not be confirmed independently.
Iraqi government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said Rohrabacher's reported comments were "irresponsible".
"Those people are not welcome in Iraq. They are raising a controversial issue which influences the strategic relation between us and the United States," he said.
"They are asking for compensation for the war and we are not committed to pay anything to any of the people who participated in the invasion of Iraq," he told Reuters.
Dabbagh said Rohrabacher had not expressed this opinion when he met Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.
He added he had called the U.S. embassy in Iraq when he learned of the congressman's comments at the news conference but was told by the embassy that Rohrabacher's statement represented his own opinion and not the official position of the United States.
The Iraqi government irritation at the U.S. congressman's comments came at a time when Iraqi leaders are debating whether to ask U.S. troops in Iraq to stay beyond the deadline for a withdrawal at the end of the year.
Dabbagh said a meeting headed by Iraqi President Jalal Talabani could be held next week to discuss the sensitive issue of a continued U.S. military presence in the country beyond 2011, among other issues.
On Thursday, U.S. President Barack Obama's pick to be the new U.S. defence secretary, outgoing CIA chief Leon Panetta, said he expected Iraq to eventually ask Washington to keep U.S. troops in the country beyond the year-end.
U.S. forces in Iraq halted combat operations last year and the remaining 47,000 American troops are due to pull out by Dec. 31 under a 2008 bilateral security accord.
While overall violence has fallen sharply in Iraq since the peak of sectarian warfare in 2006-2007, Iraqi security forces continue to fight a weakened but still lethal insurgency. Bombings and other attacks occur daily.
The total of U.S. military casualties in Iraq since 2003 stands at 4,459, according to the icasualties.org website.
In the biggest single loss of life since 2009, five U.S. soldiers were killed in a rocket attack on a Baghdad base on Monday and another U.S. soldier was killed in southern Iraq on Wednesday, the U.S. military said.
\ã-'sir-é-ä\ n (1998)
1: an ancient empire of Ashur
2: a democratic state in Bet-Nahren, Assyria (northern
Iraq, northwestern Iran, southeastern Turkey and eastern Syria.)
a democratic state that fosters the social and political rights to all of
its inhabitants irrespective of their religion, race, or gender
4: a democratic state that believes in the freedom of
religion, conscience, language, education and culture in faithfulness to the
principles of the United Nations Charter —
Ethnicity, Religion, Language
Israeli, Jewish, Hebrew
Assyrian, Christian, Aramaic
Saudi Arabian, Muslim, Arabic
\ã-'sir-é-an\ adj or n (1998)
1: descendants of the ancient empire of Ashur
2: the Assyrians, although representing but one single
nation as the direct heirs of the ancient Assyrian Empire, are now
doctrinally divided, inter sese, into five principle
ecclesiastically designated religious sects with their corresponding
hierarchies and distinct church governments, namely, Church of the
East, Chaldean, Maronite, Syriac Orthodox and Syriac Catholic.
These formal divisions had their origin in the 5th century of the
Christian Era. No one can coherently understand the Assyrians
as a whole until he can distinguish that which is religion or church
from that which is nation -- a matter which is particularly
difficult for the people from the western world to understand; for
in the East, by force of circumstances beyond their control,
religion has been made, from time immemorial, virtually into a
criterion of nationality.
the Assyrians have been referred to as Aramaean, Aramaye, Ashuraya,
Ashureen, Ashuri, Ashuroyo, Assyrio-Chaldean, Aturaya, Chaldean,
Chaldo, ChaldoAssyrian, ChaldoAssyrio, Jacobite, Kaldany, Kaldu,
Kasdu, Malabar, Maronite, Maronaya, Nestorian, Nestornaye, Oromoye,
Suraya, Syriac, Syrian, Syriani, Suryoye, Suryoyo and Telkeffee. —
1: a Semitic language which became the lingua franca of
the Middle East during the ancient Assyrian empire.
2: has been referred to as Neo-Aramaic, Neo-Syriac, Classical
Syriac, Syriac, Suryoyo, Swadaya and Turoyo.