2017

The role of Imams in ethno-sectarian reconciliation

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

KAS and WEO host second conference on religious tolerance in Iraq
The atrocities committed by the so-called Islamic State have revealed the devastating dimensions that religious intolerance can take. Imams play a significant role in furthering peaceful coexistence of different religious groups. Against this background, the Women Empowerment Organisation (WEO) and the KAS Syria/Iraq office held a workshop on “Religious Tolerance and Peace Education for Islamic Imams” on 15 May 2017 in Erbil. The conference is part of a long-term project of WEO and KAS aimed at ethno-sectarian reconciliation in Iraq. A first conference on the topic was held in November 2016.

2017

Consequences of the Brexit for the Middle East

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

KAS and al-Bayan Center host panel discussion in Baghdad
By triggering Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon at the end of March, British Prime Minister Theresa May has officially initiated the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union. Against this background, Konrad Adenauer Foundation and the al-Bayan Center for Planning and Studies hosted a panel discussion on 6 April 2017 in Baghdad that dealt with the possible consequences of the Brexit for Europe and for European foreign policy in the Middle East.

2017

Tobias Zech visits Baghdad, Erbil and Sinjar

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

CSU-parliamentarian learns about the challenges in Iraq
From 5 to 10 April, the KAS Syria/Iraq office hosted CSU-parliamentarian Tobias Zech in Baghdad and in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI). Besides political talks in Baghdad and Erbil, the programme also included a visit of the city of Sinjar in Northern Iraq. Sinjar was captured by the so-called Islamic State (IS) in 2014 and was liberated in late 2015. Zech was one of the first German politicians to visit the completely destroyed Yezidi city since its liberation.

2017

The Need for Security Sector Reform in Syria

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

KAS and Omran Center hold experts meeting in Beirut
Syria’s security services under the Assad regime are designed to protect the regime at all costs, and have also violated citizens’ rights and have created a culture of fear in Syria. In light of the continuing war and the perpetration of abuses by the security services, the KAS Syria/Iraq Office and its partner, the Omran Center for Strategic Studies, held a closed-door experts meeting in March 2017 in Beirut with various experts aiming at drafting a series of reports and recommendations on reforming Syria’s security sector.

2017

The Future of IS Provinces and Affiliates: Survival or Decline?

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

KAS and IFI hold conference on threat potential of IS provinces
The ideology of the so-called Islamic State (IS) has, from the outset, included a clear message of territorial expansion and worldwide domination. In 2014 and 2015, IS declared a total of 20 new provinces. However, with the imminent military defeat of the core of IS in Iraq and Syria, the future of the IS branches, provinces and affiliates seems unclear. To discuss these post-IS scenarios, the Syria/Iraq office and the Issam Fares Instituteorganised a two day conference on 21 and 22 March 2017. The conference brought together international experts, academics and researchers from 14 countries.

2017

Beyond Daesh: Ending the Cycle of Conflicts, Towards Durable Solutions

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

IRIS AND KAS HOLD CONFERENCE ON WAYS TO STABILISE IRAQ AND the Kurdistan region
From 8 to 9 March 2017, the KAS Syira/Iraq office and the Institute of Regional and International Studies (IRIS) at the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS), held the annual Sulaimani Forum, entitled “Beyond Daesh: Ending the Cycle of Conflicts, Towards Durable Solutions.” The forum was attended by many high-ranking Iraqi and Kurdish officials, most notably the Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, who came directly from the Mosul offensive to the forum.

2017

Roderich Kiesewetter visits Kurdistan Region of Iraq

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

CDU-parliamentarian learns about the current situation in Northern Iraq
With the Mosul operation of the Iraqi army slowly but steadily advancing, questions regarding the future prospects of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI) and Iraq after the territorial defeat of the so-called Islamic State (IS) are increasingly reemerging. Against this background, the KAS Syria/Iraq Office with the support of the Kurdish Open Think Tank (OTT) hosted German Member of Parliament Roderich Kiesewetter from 2 to 4 March in the KRI.

2017

Iraqi delegation from Baghdad visits Hamburg and Berlin

by Nils Wörmer, Lucas Lamberty

KAS hosts high-level dialogue programme on German-Iraqi cooperation
The German-Iraqi relations have since 2014 entered into a new phase. Germany is one of the biggest donor countries of Iraq and is engaged militarily in the fight against the so-called Islamic State (ISIL). Moreover, by co-chairing the task force on stabilisation of the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL, Germany actively contributes to the reconstruction of Iraq. Against this background, the Syria/Iraq Office and the Domestic Programmes Team for the first time invited a delegation of Iraqi government representatives, members of parliament and think tankers to Germany.