Iraq is preparing to host the first conference of regional neighbors at the end of August, with the aim of discussing the political and security challenges facing the region.
Official sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that the conference was scheduled to be held at the summit level during the last ten days of August and would not be limited to Arab or Islamic countries neighboring Iraq but would extend to other states in the regional neighborhood.
“One of the most important issues that the conference will discuss is the political and security challenges facing the countries of the region, whether in the context of their bilateral relations or in terms of overall regional transformations and current and future influences,” the official sources said.
They added that the holding of this conference in Baghdad was aimed at restoring Iraq’s influential regional role, which declined due to the policies of the former regime, especially its invasion of Kuwait in 1990.
The Neighboring Countries’ Conference will be the first of its kind at this level since the Arab Summit in Iraq in 2012 and the tripartite meeting between Iraq, Egypt and Jordan at the end of June, which was described by Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi as the “New Orient” summit.
Kadhimi has started sending invitations to the countries of the region to attend the conference.
Iraqi Minister of Planning Khaled Battal conveyed a written message to the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al Sabah. Other envoys dispatched by the Iraqi premier are expected to visit neighboring countries and a number of European states.