Minutes of annual general meeting

Minutes of annual general meeting of the APPG on the Kurdistan Region in Iraq. Tuesday 10 July 2018. CR8.

Attendance: Jack Lopresti, Robert Halfon, Mary Glindon, Lord Clement-Jones, Graham Jones, Bob Blackman, Michael Tomlinson, Lady Hodgson, Dame Rosie Winterton, and Daniel Carden.

Also in attendance: Gary Kent (Secretary), Matthew Dent (Parliamentary Secretary to Jack Lopresti), Karwan Jamal Tahir and Hawre Wahid for the Kurdistan Regional Government, and Liam Allmark of the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of England and Wales.

Apologies. Andrea Jenkyns, Stephen Metcalfe MP, Henry Smith MP, Ian Austin, Lord Glasman, Lloyd Russell-Moyle.

1 Agreed Jack Lopresti as Chairman.

2 Agreed Lord Clement-Jones, Mary Glindon, Robert Halfon MP and Ian Austin as Vice-Chairs.

3 Agreed the following as officers: Mike Gapes MP, Graham Jones MP, Bob Stewart MP, Henry Smith MP, Andrea Jenkyns MP, Stephen Metcalfe MP, Lord Glasman, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP, Chris Stephens MP, Bob Blackman MP, Baroness Hodgson, Baroness Ramsay, Lloyd Russell-Moyle MP, Michael Tomlinson MP, Daniel Carden MP, Steve Reed MP, and Tom Brake MP.

4 Approved the Income and Expenditure statement for 26 June 2017 to 25 June 2018.

5 Gary Kent, Jack Lopresti, Robert Halfon and Matthew Dent reported on the recent delegation to Kurdistan and Baghdad. Liam Allmark also gave his views as an observer.

Mary Glindon suggested we look at twinning arrangements between British and Kurdistani institutions. Bob Blackman suggested we look at possible activities involving the Inter-Parliamentary Union. Michael Tomlinson suggested we seek a meeting with the new Foreign Secretary.

6 KRG High Representative Karwan Jamal Tahir briefed the group on the current situation in the Kurdistan Region. He thanked the RAF on its centenary for its invaluable assistance in fighting Daesh and protecting Kurdistan.

7 Agreed the following:

We welcome the Kurdistani Parliament’s APPG on the UK as a partner in providing training of MPs and in encouraging other organisations to train Kurdistani MPs.

We will convene a meeting of interested groups to discuss this and also how we can encourage the growth and capacity of youth and student groups in Kurdistan.

We will explore how to organise short and introductory delegations outside parliamentary recesses to undertake some training at the Kurdistani Parliament, meet youth and student groups and a few senior leaders as well as the British community in Kurdistan.

We will publish the report of the last delegation online and in printed form to be circulated to all attendees at the recent KRG reception.

Articles by participants will be drafted by Gary to coincide with the publication of the report, who will also seek to persuade a newspaper to publish a news report.

We will seek a meeting with the new Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt and with Alistair Burt to discuss the report.

We will seek a meeting with the Immigration Minister to discuss the visa situation.

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