Fouad Hussein: The fourth round of dialogue between Baghdad and Washington will be the last

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Iraqi Foreign Minister Fouad Hussein confirmed that the fourth round of dialogue between Baghdad and Washington will be the last, as the British government announced it would impose sanctions on five people in four countries, including Iraq, and said one of the people a former governor of Nineveh.

Hussein said: “The meeting of Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kazemi and US President Joe Biden will discuss general Iraqi-US relations, including failure to maintain a US base in Iraq.”

He added: “The round of dialogue will witness agreement on planning the US withdrawal from all Iraqi countries”, noting that the Americans are in Iraqi camps, not American ones, as some say and declare. And he indicated that the current US administration understands the situation in Iraq in a way that contradicts the previous administration, pointing out that both sides can return to the 2008 agreement after the round of strategic dialogue.

Last Monday, Secretary of State Fouad Hussein, who heads a high-level delegation, arrived in Washington, DC, to prepare for the fourth phase of the strategic dialogue to discuss the US withdrawal from Iraq.

The third round of dialogue concluded last April and both sides described it as very successful at the time, while the first round of the strategic dialogue started in June 2020.

On the other hand, British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said in a statement that the sanctions relate to corruption charges in four countries: Equatorial Guinea, Zimbabwe, Venezuela and Iraq. He explained that the Iraqi on whom the sanctions have been imposed is Nofal Hammadi Al-Sultan Al-Akoub, the former governor of Nineveh.

Al-Akoub is currently serving a five-year prison term in Iraq for corruption, including wasting five billion Iraqi dinars (about £2.5 million) through fake public works, the statement said.

In October last year, the Federal Integrity Commission in Iraq announced the execution of an arrest warrant for Al-Akoub, indicating that the execution of the warrant came after approval of the competent court to investigate integrity issues in the governorate.

The Commission’s Investigative Department indicated that its personnel in Nineveh Governorate were in a position to carry out the arrest warrant issued against the former governor, which was issued on the basis of the provisions of Resolution 160 of 1983 of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry which was established under decree 126 of 2020 on serious corruption cases.

The authority had announced it had formed a high-level investigative team to reveal the fate of the funds withdrawn before the resignation of the former governor of Nineveh.

(offices)

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