- Khamis Khanjar, Al-Siyada Coalition
- interviewed by: Noor Al-Majid, Journalist
Khamis Khanjar of the Al-Siyada Coalition stressed his commitment to the political agreement that all parties of the government agreed on, telling the audience that it requires time, and that finalising the budget will make things more comfortable within the government. The political agreement is going in the right direction, he added, explaining that committees are working on the conditions of the agreement, but this will take time.
“We all agreed after long discussions that these agreements [on the various political issues] need to be implemented,” Khanjar said. There were concerns that not all agreements were implemented. But this time we had serious discussions and went into details, and now within six months we have reached the implementation of more than 30% of the steps of the political agreement. The Prime Minister is taking practical, clear and convincing steps, and it is our duty to support him.
He also stressed the importance of providing justice to the individuals and families who have been wrongly accused of being affiliated with ISIS, which one of the agreements aims to tackle by re-opening investigations. “I believe we have an opportunity,” Khanjar added, referring to public pardons which are awaited by thousands in prisons. “There is some confusion on amending the Pardon Law and approving it,” he said. “Consequently, we will focus on the need to release thousands of people who find themselves in prison because of Daesh.”
According to Khanjar, especially before 2016, many confessions were extracted by force, torture or by bad intelligence from people. “Today, providing justice to the Iraqi people is something we all want, not only the political leaders,” he said. “We don’t want to let the terrorists out of prison, but we want to let innocent people out of prison.”
“The budget is for all people, and we are endeavouring to support the government,” he added, stressing the need for the country to come together. “Iraq is facing a number of crises. It is facing the issues with water on the borders, and we need to push the wheels of development with this,” Khanjar said, aware of the threats that water scarcity and climate change pose in Iraq, and the need for alternative energy sources and renewable energy. “Our brothers in Turkey are also facing problems, and many face drinking shortages,” he added.
The Sunni Alliance is the biggest in parliament with 60 members, Khanjar told the audience, and they are pushing for positive influence on the political scene in Iraq. Regards to displaced people in Iraq, Khanjar said that they want these people to go back to their places of origin.
Iraq Forum: For Stability and Prosperity
Session 5B: State-building in the Eyes of Iraq’s Political Leaders