Iraq has just hosted a Middle Eastern summit that drew together regional neighbours at one table. The conference was intended to be for the purpose of “cooperation and partnership.” The region has a myriad of strained relationships between several countries and Iraq is attempting to bring viewpoints closer to one another. Representatives from Jordan, Egypt, Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and France were present. The representation was also at a head of state level for several countries, which is a breakthrough for Iraq, as it takes on rejuvenating its diplomatic ties to a superior level.
Iraqi President Barham Salih said, “Iraq, which for years has been a headline for war and conflicts, is hosting leaders and representatives of the region today to affirm their support for Iraqi sovereignty and prosperity.” American President Joe Biden also commented on Iraq’s leadership by saying, “this kind of diplomacy has never been more important as we seek to ease tensions among neighbouring states and expand cooperation across the Middle East, and Iraq’s leadership on this is historic.”
Iraq has suffered from numerous wars in the past few decades, and it is only logical for it to be pivoting towards creating strong diplomatic relations in the region and beyond. France’s President Emmanuel Macron was also present, as his country was a co-organizer of this summit.
Iraq can be suitable for the role of a mediator in the region, as it has good relations with its neighbours in all four directions and can certainly be a unifier after decades of division. The Arabian/Persian Gulf has had its fair share of discordances, and Iraq seems to want tides to settle down. Regional peace is only possible with dialogue, and those talks, despite being in their infancy, hold great promises for the people of the Middle East.
The countries in the region know very well that war yields nothing but catastrophe and devastation, this was evident up until a few years ago in the majority of the region and continues to be the case in some locations to this day. Having a major blood-shedding war serves no interest. Having those talks is a major role in stopping violence from continuing or emerging. Stability and prosperity must be the top priority for the Middle East as being engaged in ceaseless battles is guaranteed to hinder the goal of regional peace.