Philippine hostage leaves Iraq, Cairo meeting starts deliberations
Iraq-Regional, Politics, 7/22/2004
The Philippine hostage Angelo De La Croz who was release on Tuesday left Baghdad yesterday ( Wednesday) and he is expected to arrive in Abu Dhabi to undergo medical checks before he returns back to his country.
Worthy mentioning that De La Croz was held for two weeks in Iraq before the group which was kidnapping him decided to release him after the Philippine soldiers left Iraq one month before the set date. The Philippine vowed to continue to be a strong ally for the US despite the withdrawal of its forces from Iraq.
In the same context, Japan has stressed its determination to keep its forces in Iraq despite the threats attributed to the group of the Jordanian Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
However, al-Zarqawi group issued a statement in which it denied that it had threatened Japan. Japan is deploying a non- fighting group in al-Samawa city to the southern east of Iraq composed of 550 soldiers.
Meantime, the 6th meeting of the foreign ministers of countries neighboring Iraq started in Cairo yesterday. News reports said that the Iraqi security file is on top of the agenda to be discussed by the meeting, as well as the role played by the neighboring states and the international sides to giving aids to the Iraqi people to eliminate their conditions and enabling them making the elections by the beginning of 2005.
These meetings are attended by the foreign ministers of Egypt, Iran, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Syria, Jordan and Iraq, in the presence of the UN envoy to Iraq al-Akhdar al-Ibraheimi.
The Iraqi foreign minister Hoshyar Zeibari said in a statement following his meeting with the Egyptian foreign minister Ahmad Abu al-Gheit that the meeting of Iraq's neighboring states due yesterday in Cairo is very important, warning that any deteriorations for the conditions in Iraq will be reflected negatively on the status in the region.
On the other hand, the Iraqi foreign minister appointed some 49 new ambassadors in several Arab and foreign states, and thereby announcing a new phase of diplomatic contacts between Iraq and the world countries.
Al-Ibraheimi: neighboring states can help Iraq without sending forces
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