Meloni visits troops in Iraq, meets Al Sudani – English

(ANSA) – ROME, DECEMBER 23 – Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni landed in Baghdad on Friday and held a meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani before visiting Italian troops stationed in the country.

Meloni met with the Italian ambassador Maurizio Greganti and representatives of the Italian forces at the Union 3 military base, the headquarters of the NATO Mission in Iraq (NMI), currently led by Italy under the command of General Giovanni Maria Iannucci.

“I am really happy to be here today in Iraq in what is my first bilateral mission outside of Europe (as prime minister),” Italy’s first female head of government said on the sidelines of her meeting with al-Sudani.

“The country of Iraq is a friend, which has shown once again that it believes in democracy with the newly formed government.

“Iraq is a nation that has made important strides in security and political stability, and, in our opinion, it can look at its reconstruction with optimism.

“Italy has always been at the forefront of helping Iraq in every way.

“We also do this within the framework of the coalition against Daesh, because there can be no stability and prosperity in the Middle East without a strong Iraq.”

Meloni also welcomed the fact that Muslim-majority Iraq has made December 25 a national holiday, so that Christians can celebrate Christmas, for which he thanked al-Sudani and considered it “an important sign of respect for religious freedom”. (ANSA).