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Rohrabacher: It’s Time to Recognize an Independent Kurdistan

Jan 7, 2015

WASHINGTON – Returning from a congressional trip he led to the region, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, chairman of the House Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats, today issued the following statement on Kurdistan’s status and its welcome to Christian refugees:

“I wish to express my gratitude to the Kurdish people, the Kurdistan regional government, and especially Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani, for their courage and generosity in providing refuge to a million desperate and displaced persons, many of whom are Christians. Of the six million people living in Kurdistan, one million are there seeking shelter from bloodthirsty ISIS militants who have committing unspeakable crimes against them.  Men, women, and children – singled out as Christians – are being brutally driven from their ancient homeland with only the clothes on their backs.

“The protection offered by the Kurds is a tribute to their historic benevolence and speaks well of their values as a people.  Kurdistan extends this generosity even while its own resources and infrastructure are severely strained. This humanitarian gesture, itself a drama of biblical dimension, shows Muslim, Yazidi, and Christian believers can live in peace and together resist the common evil of religious intolerance.

“In this week when we celebrate the birth of the Prince of Peace, we may look at this display of common purpose in Kurdistan as an example of how, united with people of other faiths, we can make this a better world.

“The Kurdish government and people have earned our support, both for their generosity and their courageous battle against an evil that threatens to overwhelm the Middle East and put the United States and other countries in jeopardy.  It is long since past time that we recognize the Kurdish people as an independent nation and not a subjugated province of Iraq.

“At the very least, American support and supplies should flow directly to them, not restricted by a requirement that our assistance first go through Baghdad.”