Azerbaijan, Baku, Aug. 9 / Trend U.Sadikhova /
Trend Middle East Desk interviews Iraqi Vice President Tariq Al-Hashimi.
Trend: How influential are neighboring states in forming the new Iraqi government?
Hasihimi: The role of neighboring countries is conditioned by regional and international factors on the Iraqi political arena. No one hides their interests or their presence. Iraqis need to develop a national political project in the near future without foreign intervention, which will stabilize the situation and create a new government.
Q.: Can Iraqi political parties unite to ensure security in the country?
A.: To do so, a strong political platform should be formed by political forces on the basis of principles of respect for national values, human rights, mutual understanding, justice and civil peace. Such a platform can be created by forming a national coalition that will withstand problems associated with building a civil society in Iraq, and ensure a bright future for the coming generations.
Q.: Do Iraqi parties plan to extend an invitation to foreign forces to stay in the country to ensure stability and security - including the United States?
A.: Iraq has a constitution and institutions, so political parties have no right to make independent decisions. This is possible only through a vote in parliament or by the will of the Iraqi people. The days when Iraqis needed assistance from external forces to maintain security and stability are gone. Iraqis do not intend to seek assistance from foreign forces in the future. It must rely on itself to create an armed forces that will be able to ensure security and defense.
Q.: What are the prospects of development of Azerbaijani-Iraqi relations? How do you assess the political dialogue between the parties?
A.: Iraq stands for the development of friendly relations with Azerbaijan because we have a lot in common - cultural diversity, rich hydrocarbon resources, favorable agricultural conditions and a favorable geopolitical position, and democratic development. The development of our relations has been made possible through political understanding, economic cooperation and strengthening friendship between the Azerbaijani and Iraqi peoples. Naturally, we are counting on a stronger and stronger relationship.
Q.: How do you assess the prospects of energy cooperation between Baku and Baghdad?
Iraq is building an open economy. Azerbaijan is unique because of its rich natural resources and its strong desire to increase investments in the country through international cooperation. We hope to learn from Azerbaijan's experience in terms of economic development. Iraq wants to push for the all-round development of its relations with every country in the region
Q.: Does Iraq intend to connect to the Nabucco gas pipeline?
Participation in regional energy supplies is paramount in our plans to join and cooperate with the global economy. Iraq wants to become an active participant in the Nabucco project, as well as in other projects. Iraqi gas deliveries must recommence in the near future.