Iraqi PM meets with Angela Merkel in Berlin

German Chancellor Angela Merkel met with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi on Tuesday in Berlin, where she pledged to continue to support the Middle Eastern country on security issues and during the coronavirus pandemic.

Mustafa al-Kadhimi has been prime minister since May, after a wave of mass anti-government protests swept the country and led to the fall of the previous government under Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi.

During a joint press statement with al-Kadhimi, the German chancellor welcomed his government’s “will to reform.”

She said Kadhimi’s government was pursuing a “very ambitious agenda” on issues such as fighting corruption, the rule of law, strengthening state institutions and the state’s monopoly on the use of force.

That “ambitious agenda” included the announcement of early elections for June 2021. “Through these measures, the Iraqi people’s confidence in state institutions can be strengthened,” she said.

Read more: Can Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi stay the course?

For his part, al-Kadhimi underscored his government’s commitment to transparency in the elections. He thanked Germany for its “efforts to stabilize the region.”

He added that his government was striving for increased cooperation with Germany in areas such as refugee policy and economic policy, particularly in the energy sector.

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