Skip to main content

tv   Combating ISIS and Protecting Minority Groups in Iraq  CSPAN  August 4, 2017 3:55pm-5:43pm EDT

3:55 pm
>> now an iraqi parliament member and kurdistan's regional government representative on combating eye and is protecting minority communes in the country. also, religious freedom, equality rights for women and humanitarian effort inside the region. >> ladies and gentlemen, let me welcome you to the united states institution of peace. we are very closed to welcome you here this afternoon. i'm billtail, the executivevicee vice president at the instate of peace. p we'll have an opportunity to introduce everyone at the right time the cured stan regional government -- and -- the
3:56 pm
ambassador from iraq. both will have an opportunity to speak to you before the panel discussion. three years ago this month, isis targeted many of iraq's minority groups, including christians,ty yazidi, turkman and others on its assault. isis targeted arabs and kurds in many more areas. last year, the secretary of state and the u.s. congress and just last week, the current administration, labeled ask, genocide the attacks on yazidis, christians, assyrians, chaldeans and other groups by isis. last administration, this administration, are in agreement and have been very clear. over the past three years, these communities have faced unspeakable atrocities,
3:57 pm
including mass murder, sexual enslavement and torture. through the efforts of the iraqi government, the krg, the u.s. government and the international community, important progress has been made, the liberation of areas are important accomplishments. essential steps in creating conditions for religious minorities to return home. however, despite these gains thousands remain displaced and many have seen the isis assaulto exploited fissures between the communities. they suffered under isis and saddam hussein and other iraqis, continue to fight for their rights as citizens and work to ensure a safe future for allll iraqis. over the years, united states institute of peace has supported
3:58 pm
iraqi minorities to advance their rights and emphasize the vital importance of their venuses in local and national governance in ensuring fair representation, safety and security for all iraqis. the institute works to find practical solutions for preventing and resolving violent conflict. that's what we do. we do this by working on the ground in iraq and other countries around the world with local partners so they can become catalysts for peace in their own communities. the u.s. has been in iraq uninterrupted since 2003 withwe offices in baghdad and -- they -- areas recently liberated from isis through dilog, joint problem solving. usip continues to support the alliance of iraqi minorities, coalition of civil society e organizations that provides a voice for minority groups and
3:59 pm
works on their behalf in practical terms. was formed no 2011 and made up or 13 nongovernmental organizations working to advance the rights of christians, yazidis, kurds, and other communities. aim also serves as a critical voice for iraqi minorities, and stakeholders, including the u.s. government, the u.n., and the iraqi kurdish national andve regional governments. in 2014 they worked with the u.n. to -- adopted a declaration of the basic rights rights and fundmenl freedoms. ... process along with equality and antidiscrimination with iraq based on the roadmap
4:00 pm
in the 2014 declaration of principles. aim has also supported initiatives by its members to respond to and raise awareness of humanitarian crisis in iraq and minority crisis following isis assault. currently, the is working for the petite support tory budgeting to increase minority participation in decision-making at a provincial level. it's also working to alleviate tensions between christians and shoebox in a plane through series of dialogues informed by the findings of detail assessment completed with assessment from both communities. in addition to that work, i want to acknowledge that many organizations and activists, especially those who work in minority groups have done commendable work to bring attention to the needs of minorities and needed support to address those needs. but more work needs to be done. this afternoon we want to focus on the future.
4:01 pm
our panel will discuss ways the >> >> this diverse set of speakers is here to discuss those complex pieces to discuss the future of these communities that has the unique historical mosaic program will be an interesting conversation absolutely necessary at this critical time for all minorities and iraqis before the panel discussion space of remarks from the ambassador and representative from both iraq and the kurdish republic in the ambassador has been the iraqi ambassador since jihadists prior to his senior hesh served as the iraqi ambassador to france and has held a number of positions please help me to welcome them.
4:02 pm
[applause] >> the kurdish republic wasn 1941. [applause] i welcome hershey is the daughter in the hero. this is a topic that is hard for me to talk about because i have lived it from afar when you live a tragedy from afar you feel even worse and i have reasons to feel it more than others because mother is from mosul and i have family members there. in 2008 eric schmidt came and asked us what is the worst thing that saddam hussein did? some of ussi entered -- answered some said the uprising.
4:03 pm
i think the worst legacy is that we had a choice of which one to choose. if we ask that question 2014 we would of had one answer this is the worse saying that has happened in the 21st century so far and i hope it is the last such of its beecher -- beecher because iraq is a place of minorities. there is a documentary written around that is a very vivid description of what she sees when she goes there.eally but at the turn of the last century there would have known that but they left their mark and in fact, this
4:04 pm
is something taken into account when they started working and if you look at of a preamble the elements of plurality in the multiple nature of the iraqi is imprinted so this is something they have to live with it and have chosen as a result the federal structure us to take into account. arak 2017 is not iraq of 2014. the iraqi army in 2017 is not the same of 2014 the government and the people are not the same i was recently at a conference in aspen where people talked inout relationships between
4:05 pm
the arab states and america. but for weeks the real war began 2014 and the consequence is it brought all iraqis together with one of the most emotionally charged images of those officers standing side by side standing by those areas captured by isis. it is hard and i have to tell you would think the road ahead is even harder because we still have not finished the liberation of iraq but that it has that more his into the proposition we have to still
4:06 pm
keep fighting it but on the issues we have to face on the status of where the minorities are simply put, for iraq is not iraq without the minorities. so there act of preservation with their role in tact and protected is recognized by the institution this is why we have parliamentarians representing minorities in iraq and i really have to give pay tribute to those
4:07 pm
standing here touching on the conscience in 2014 raising the issue forcing us into action and unfortunately the world was late so as we move ahead we both have to contend with immigration for the rest of the iraq that these elements are linked to each other and carry out the stabilization to have people come out to their homes and villages that stabilization in humanitarian work that these
4:08 pm
are the words of the occupations actually recently that is a method and model to be applied with any military action. so one thing that was affected from a the history were the first victims of the iraqi army word that irople suffer the first time in her experience of the vegetarian work and army put into the strategic and tactical objectives that is remarkable and one of the reasons why the iraqi army of 2017 is not the same of
4:09 pm
2014 so we have to complete the stabilization of the narrative and their theti demands are humongous nobody has come up -- has come up with a definite figure by the for word that the neighbors are planning to hold to try to help us with that so the well-being of iraqis is part of the region. but beyond that looking at the issues with the trend of politics that you see it in iraq first of all, there is that genuine role towards destabilization because it
4:10 pm
is the efficient thing to do we plan to have elections at the beginning of next year i have to say they have to project the expertise was the iraqi counterterrorism service and american officers said this and i have to give tribute to them because in excess of 30% the other is the electoral commissions to be fair and
4:11 pm
free with the outcome so we have to deal with that issue of governance. beyond all of this one issue that is of importance for us is the issue of justice and people have been wronged. s.a. visit france in 2014 i asked what was the thing prime on his mind? he said the problem that i have is preventing the young men and the guy knows what happened to them. but this is the prime thing we have to deal with some of
4:12 pm
this is one of the reasons that we help prevent this is an iraqi and i signal the work you have done. but i have to note there have been iraqi effortsard to t geared towards this end on a particular note a project by a parliament member from mosul who decided to look at what has been done with reconciliation to establish social justice in the world and came up with a plan that i thought was brilliant for any of the voters out there.d of the idea was that the city
4:13 pm
has been liberated and asked if for example, they were subjected to rape or murder then put on a judicial track. but confiscation of property is another mechanism.he that is the kind of thing that they do well.entives and then to go around to various members of parliament which is the most diverse in iraq with the endorsement of all love the of with the numbers -- women that i salute to.
4:14 pm
so we will be all your help to do that but beyond that to heal those survivors with massive efforts and psychological assistance and all iraqis are subject to ruth ptsd to the varying degrees.mild f this is something we need your help with and i will read it to you of what the international community could do to help iraq.
4:15 pm
it needs help with the human rights in that those human-rights groups must we formed to establish in all iraqi cities asin hum documentation and identification in should be for related. they should be trade and how to document the fall of the cases and they should be a trade of how to prosecute them. iraqis psychologist in psychologists should third how to counsel survivors and doctors should be trained to identify human remains. also to establish the institutional framework for all of this and this cannot happen without a concerted effort. but i wrote this may 2003. windows mass graves were first discovered.e and we have even more pressing cases. as opposed to what happened earlier in if it is not
4:16 pm
dealt with quickly it will foster. -- pester. [applause] >> thanks to ambassador yasseen our next beaker as serving as representative since 2015 of iraq prior to that of treatment she was the high representative to the united kingdom also elected to the party in 2010. [applause]
4:17 pm
[chanting] [chanting] >> i have no idea what that was about. good afternoon to ambassador taylor and rand ambassador yasseen ladies and gentleman in a distinguished speakers i am pleased the caird he can partner with the u.s. institute for peace in this discussion as we honor all of those two were killed or raped or in slade, injured or harmed by
4:18 pm
we must never forget the crimes isis committed threeet years ago across iraq and august 3rd, 2014 from parts of did a the we must do all the pecan to help of victims and restore their hopes and livelihood toti bring to justice the criminals who committed those crimes. when isis struck to make of the iraqi mosaic it was left unscathed however it is the minorities especially the christians the krg has taken several steps it was the first government to recognize as genocide than
4:19 pm
that kerry g. hayek committee looking at recognition submitted genocide article 15 communication to the international criminal court. april 2015 and then decline to formulate that examination and to encourage those member countries it with that hybrid tribunal it with those security forces but those that still remain in captivity that care g has
4:20 pm
opened a rape victim center hopefully the first of its kind in iraq where support is available to the victims of rape we have protected and provided shelter for hundreds of thousands ofr muslims and kurds and arabs to provide christian and churches and communities. and then to liberate thousands from its territory taken by isis and those from peshawar day have been killed kurdistan has articles in the draft constitution that protect the rights of all people of all fake the background that
4:21 pm
we recognize this is not be enough. even in in in kurdistan for other parts of iraq we need to except what society evolves in demands change for example, to allocate to the minorities. some are calling for that annotation to be widened. this should be studied in in carefully considered and is maintained. this is just one example. what about the broader picture outside of kurdistan and iraq? what do we need to do for those to live a reasonable life? trust was lacking even before isis
4:22 pm
came in the now be out of reach in the near future. is more realistic to speak of security and protection the steps that need to be taken are many and i echo those recommendations but first justice and accountability we need the international community to step up of and say never again to not allow those perpetrators to escape justice the government of iraq said in answer the call from other united nations members to allow the investigation of the isis crime the care she was the first to recognize the crimes as genocide and we commend the government of the united states and others for doing the same. the question is whether we allow the recognition of
4:23 pm
genocide to pd only step or the first that towards justice. to enhance security or our stabilization and reconstruction we need those liberated areas to be those unexploded devices various ford and local militias need to be removed so committees hon return to their homes. economic opportunities to develop those disputed territories but now they are rubble and the tactical solutions are needed to enable families with professional practices we need that international community to engage wholeheartedly in this effort and we cannot do it
4:24 pm
alone. not through the krg or government of iraq. we need legislation. we need to change the laws that currently do not treat women or religious minorities as equal citizens. with the international coalition speaker of the economic empowerment of women in the reconstruction phase we cannot help but be skeptical a woman in iraq cannot have citizenship to her children and a christian in iraq whose children and sorry let me start again, a christian children for a father who converts to islam or a mother who carries a muslim are automatically muslim. there is no choice. many laws need to be changedcha to empower women and minorities.
4:25 pm
many of the communities in the area have called for those areas to be protected and administered by their own communities. even in the kurdistan region to have a much more decentralized system ofiz governance in the future. future we need to build a true army it needs to reflect the makeup of the country and not just one component the and iraqi military defeated a determined enemy. with those that are encompassed in iraq. i with kurdistan to equip the
4:26 pm
pressure virga when isis struck 2014 -- peshmerga were outgunned and cannot protect our citizens or ourselves working with germany and britain to professionalize the peshmerga hoping to eclipse in a different way.. and we need to reconsider education they need to be educated in the learn about other religions. is a key components but the krg prime minister has instructed the ministry of the endowment of religious repairs to change the
4:27 pm
curriculum from the islamic studies to religious studies in schools across kurdistan. in conclusion nobody canie deny the fact is broken among the communities prior to the isis onslaught it is the shared responsibility toef pursue justice and accountability with the reconciliation process toon pros provide economic opportunity and encourage peaceful coexistence to be realistic but that is immense andal difficult their deep and broad it is painful to be betrayed by your neighbor to have their loved ones raped and enslaved or for their
4:28 pm
fate the irving greater background reconciliation against different groups is a long and painstaking process.l and on i would like to thank you sip for organizing this event with us. [applause] >> we attire your boy is in the face of thation in interruption and also our security team to handle that . now our panel is welcome to the stage and for the
4:29 pm
director of -- director of genocide at the museum will moderate. >> it is an honor to be here for this conversation. i would speak for all of us to say with considerable reflection so over 700,000 religious minorities were driven from their home with the islamic state with only hours notice if even that. and to be victims of ethnic cleansing and crimes against unity.
4:30 pm
the men to protect them but we are here because that didn't start with the islamic state ended his day situation of marginal was stationed so part of that conversation is incumbentng to h how we can ensure the same communities are not targeted that they do have a place in the future that is they have had a commitment to prevent genocide that they are not the victims of crimes. that is very much at the core of the region. please.
4:31 pm
>> hopefully we will not have too much background as we also are doing thish through escape -- skype to be sure that these communities can return home knowing that they have been the berated and then with that destruction of those areas with the lack of economic opportunities. to have a collective stakeed ton to be sure we remain engaged in that environment with individuals can return home. it is an honor to the jury and many you know, her as
4:32 pm
embassador taylor and she took her community to be victimized to stop the agenda side. and the chairman of the board of directors of the iraqi minorities represent minorities including christians and other minorities.ities in and those that deserve considerable credit for that work done on their behalf. the with the u.s. department of state in washington d.c. and the director of the
4:33 pm
middle east program here atof the u.s. institute in there is remarkable work with him and his team on the groundk witt so to start the conversation and i want to ask if you could talk a little bit about the way that minority communities need to see to return home?. >>. >> i am the number of the iraqi parliament.
4:34 pm
translator: it is the pleasure to be with you today especially after the attack of my people. >> [speaking in native tongue]kingi translator: they were living their daily life the hard way. [speaking in native tongue] translator: but the problem was the neighbors would come to kill the men did enslave them and kill the children and the very
4:35 pm
first day they killed 1,300 persons. [speaking in native tongue] translator: now we have a 200700 mass graves. and then they attacked and destroyed all of them. they abducted 6,004 madrid 18 people. [speaking in native tongue] translator: of all those that were imprisoned by iso
4:36 pm
over 3,000. [speaking in native tongue] translator: cater -- took 1,060 children been converted them to islam they don't even recognize how they train them to come and attack the christians but it is just because we have a different faith. [speaking in native tongue]
4:37 pm
translator: i don't know what it gives you the region or the logic to kill me just because of my different faith. and 85 persons or villages were destroyed by them.nslator: and 90,000 of now went to other countries. count [speaking in native tongue] translator: or 5,060 before but now they're all [ now displaced.
4:38 pm
>> what are the odds of the international community? people that need help in relief to begin a new life. every need guarantees from the international community this will not happen again. [speaking in native tongue] with the international community to recognize genocide. [speaking in native tongue] translator: we are in a bad deed to recognize these.
4:39 pm
[speaking in native tongue] translator: after rebuilding the cities and villages how can we trust the neighbor of he was attacked before?. >> [speaking in native tongue] translator: we know that some of them are neighbors with those 68 persons to be enslaved by ijssel so how does that come back again?
4:40 pm
and of course, i know this happened to mother of minorities for the christians. [speaking in native tongue] translator: but of course, for everyone who tried to kill our people. [speaking in native tongue] >> it is very important to be brought to you justice [speaking in native tongue]
4:41 pm
translator: so we have to build a special piece. also to rebuild that social peace. [applause] >> a reminder that genocide is still going on for those held via the islamic state for women in children.he call
4:42 pm
also trying to provide physical protection but we often forget to in those suits turned on the neighbors for those to return home. and also to remind us of the fact that those communities within the christian community from 1.5 million but are all now displaced that is a very important thing to remember that sheer impact for individuals of their own lives. you are working on these issues on a daily basis so can you share with us what are those trollope challenges facing communities and others as
4:43 pm
they move forward?. >> can you share with us the challenge is your community and others are facing in the future. >> and so for everyone is critical to discuss us challenges said the the
4:44 pm
future with that the operation but maybe it with that issue of minority. and if that is the case. in to focus for those s minorities i did not hear
4:45 pm
all of the speaker about killing and kidnapping i would like to mention all these things but that security fell for the people in those that commit these atrocities.
4:46 pm
in with a government of mosul and this is very important and also to woo console those with those factors in how to make them
4:47 pm
involved in who grants that security in the area up. with that government of the krg in this is the question. and then also from the government did with that intervention because i know
4:48 pm
that that area and they could control the area. and that government and so what about this area?
4:49 pm
[inaudible] because the area is a conflict area. and also and also from those others. that will give these people another issue. we are working between the
4:50 pm
christians and also those of legal reforms and with the cohesion and. into the fact. and with those types of situations and that is only
4:51 pm
80 percent of the story. and that is the situation of iraq. also live the people and the government that is because those government of how we
4:52 pm
could regain the trust. darr officially the people of minorities. so we're trying to find a solution from the of all we could do with the administrative places for them because that area was
4:53 pm
elected. in the issue of the land with this intervention. and those incentives is exactly what they're expecting. [inaudible] and now we should work on many issues and from the
4:54 pm
political issue. and with a conflict between baghdad. >> hit a did a remarkable job to cover a lot of the challenges in detail and i think we can have you rubio and to share your experiences more because of those that are affected is so much more important than those are removed from a purple you had a couple of points and are critically important with our discussion first and foremost, and then that
4:55 pm
sense of security and also exacerbated and the guarantees of political protection and even with a of governments to protect communities and identity with legal reform and that is tied to the pursuits of accountability injustice so they queue for testing of those points in in that leads to an important question of how we regard the of protection of those minority communities in all
4:56 pm
too often to set their priorities what the strategy should be to fight the islamic state in though stabilizing areas and fromm your perspective and how we understand these issues and to protect those communitiesando >> thanks for posting this discussion it we're pausing to remember who fell to isis three years ago for those women and children. and while reflecting on the recent past as say
4:57 pm
government and a community and of values to make sure they have a billion industrial homeland. and with the future of iraq posed isis racine vice president pence that religious freedom that the government will work anywhere round of world we have seen president trumpt the for what has been perpetrated against christians or muslims and of course, we recognize what was perpetrated to say that
4:58 pm
genocide had been. what do we do? with those atrocities that occurred what can we do to secure the future for up -- for minorities? and first is that issue of security have to be empowered the they are recruited and inc. and that issue of equal treatment of human rights as equal citizens what can we do to see it is rebuilt to go home? but the question of
4:59 pm
reconciliation to help them come back together in the course the issue is all iraqis want.from in with those questions of accountability of those through perpetrated that evil against innocents which are held accountable the days are the areas we are pursuing. this a this is a key your indispensable player. in you hear those excellent presentations and then to
5:00 pm
defeat as it politian to bring resources with those huge stabilization needs also working with friends and allies with religious freedom around the of world working most recently with the french in the spanish and the specific needs which are distinct from those in the majority soviet at day pivot point. and with isis pushout we have an opportunity to use the conditions recreated in
5:01 pm
with those different denominations bin to include that diversity so we are certainly committed to do everything we can. but we appreciate those partnerships that we have. . .ity th the christian community has
5:02 pm
been persecuted and that's what informs their sense of insecurity and why they want to arm themselves and seek to create militias and what greater autonomy because of that general sense of insecurity that comes from history of knowing what comes before. that's what makes us incumbent will we talk about the language or genocide or ethnic cleansing that we make that there's action with that. if were concerned about protecting these countries, we must resolve the -- the government must be there to protect the communities. that's what we should be talking about when we talk about the importance of talking of genocide and atrocities of crime. what are the obligations going forward to actually take care of the communities and those of us who engage in the administration or work with foreign governments as well what i'm concerned about is there isn't enough attention on what needs to be done toone i
5:03 pm
invest in reconciliation, stabilization, what needs to be done to affect these communities. there's a sense of 13 about the fight the rocky government will be able to step in and once the investors they faced challenges and in the absence of the international community helping these communities will be neglected and not get the a level of attention and support that is needed. why don't you talk about the work you have been doing and how you make the case of those on the hill about the importance of reconciliation work? building that trust and why that is part of a more stable iraq in a more stable nineveh, as well. >> thank you. this is the danger of going last. there is a lot, actually. reconciliation is one of there concepts and words that i am
5:04 pm
glad is being repeated more now because years ago that was seen more under the concept of framework of the rock, the top leaders. today isis has changed that concept and for many people the minorities and others who have been the victim of the genocide and other crimes they have reconciliation with forgiveness. you forgive the perpetrators of the crime which is not the case. those who accentuate or sequence reconciliation as a fluffy term that will come later after you have liberated those gone home after you have rebuilt them and then you worry about the relationships. that is also not applicable in the context of the iraq.
5:05 pm
we can go about that sequence. there are issues of the past and i'm starting with the ambassador asking the speaker spoke about how these communities -- you speak about saddam hussein, isis, other tensions and this is the reality of iraq. we've been in iraq since 2000 and we been monitoring but recently we've also done a dedicated research where we asked that we did this in partner with the middle eastern institute and center for peace building and having iraqi facilitators to ask the committees themselves what to do they see as a source of conflict in the future and what does reconciliation mean to them and that's where you go to each community, each group within the community, each political stream
5:06 pm
within this communities define this issue differently and they approach it in a different timescale. all of them unanimously will tell you don't look at this problem just from the isis perspective. isis is just one of one of the many things that we suffer from. yes, it may be the one that made news in the recent future but you have to take it -- you also have to look at the issue from two layers. there's a national layer of the iraqi layer and i like metaphors. ice rack as a ship in a turbulent sea that it has manyci damages and you try to address all these issues focusing on the minorities issues in that picture was just one that would
5:07 pm
not prevent the ship from thinking if you do not addresser the other parts. it is important to address thetf totality and that would be one of the biggest savers of international communities could do to help minorities the biggest problem. the memories themselves, at the local levels, there are specificities -- there is at least a dozen tensions and public layers they will point out to you whichever community that point out this is across the communities.n for reconciliation, for them, is to get back to what ambassador said -- is practical. there is nowhere near -- and no context is that more true than the context of the iraqi minorities. when an international committee has support -- they say what are you doing, that is what they are looking for. they are process from sometimes
5:08 pm
those who talk to them do not see them but not because they don't value them but because they are at different levels of seeing that problem. practically, reconciliation is a loose term for the minorities in the first stage would be for them to be able to go home, will our neighbors attack us again to prevent that there has to be not only protective measures of how do you look at a security parameter but how do you work on that relationship where in the first stage is a coexistenc nont coexistence. so how do you get to a peaceful coexistence and that is where, okay, you store traits of some relationship and there's no, petition for resources. i know others go into the more looser terms of we are one iraqi and one citizen and these are
5:09 pm
all important within the context but for the wounds of thosee pee people they think in practical terms. when i go through this checkpoint, whether it's an iraqi checkpoint or another group, and my being treated differently because of who i am. that is the level of practicality that they think about. when money comes in to do reconstruction, is it going to that village first our villagees because of the tensions that we have. is it going to the becauseth there's a grand scheme of demographics by a result neighbor. it is very complex. please be on the lookout for the research that will be coming out gradually and if we want to enable those people to go home we must invest in practical steps in the work of the iraqi minority, secretary budgeting is they do, for example, this is
5:10 pm
the civil society that they work but they counsel and review in mosul about how to engage the community and get their needs and convey them to their government because of the lack of resources that were mentioned. tensions could come just the fact that they received assistance, not only. [inaudible] those communities ofties a relationships would help prevent violence, help manage scarce resources, and prevent violence. he asked a number of flashpoints to look out. [inaudible] christian tension could be a flashpoint from an internationalized one where you have the sensitivities between the minorities themselves and
5:11 pm
you have regional countries like turkey, iran, who have a stake in this and this is where we have to go for a nuanced approach for practical steps and reconciliation can help manage those competitions. >> i think it's critical to be reminded of the complexity off the pre-existing tensions over there even before we came and how we can address them. b those tensions are within communities, between communities and even within the minority communities, as well. through investing in trying to do identifying the flashpoints, having resources, we can de-escalate those tensions and they don't become questions. then we have one level of protection for these particular communities.t want i want to thank you for your incredible work that you have been doing. it's one example of a very practical contribution that can be made. we have some time, thankfully, to open up to questions from the audience here and, i believe, there are microphones on either
5:12 pm
side. there are two questions right away on the left. if i could ask the questions, keep them quite short and why don't we take to at a time. >> just a reminder that william is dissipating by skype so if there is a specific question for him, signal that and william will check with you if you have comments you would like to make. >> thank you. i martin, president of the syrian american national federation.d i want to thank you were having this important event. unfortunately, mr. [inaudible] was unavailable to represent the syrians in person. she spoke eloquently about never
5:13 pm
again and equality for all but why has the kr geforce the removal of an elected mayor about push, syrian town, and replace it with the ktp member who is not voted by the people and after protests by our people for him to be reinstated to the initially replaced them with the kurdish representative and then they replaced him with another ktp member who is not voted by his own people. i like to ask her to respond to that removal, forced removal off him and his plan to annex the. [inaudible] arg? should we worried that other bee towns for syrians.uf we have suffered 100 years of genocide. we continue to suffer genocide and our people are the indigenous people. we are a minority today but we aren't. 7000 years and that is our ancestral homeland. today we don't even have the our ancestral homes were destroyed by this in the antiquities and everything and now the forced
5:14 pm
final people to leave. p >> thank you for that. when more questions back. >> hello. my name is noah. [inaudible] , fellow with the national endowment for democrat. i asked my friend to come to the event but she said it will bee another pony show that we alwayg on. thank you for raising the issu issues. [inaudible] my question is how do you have this make a different question may go to someone else. do you have any strategy when you can pointed out that these people, young people like me, they will go back. what i am seeing is also in justice and applying the justice. part of it is the correction.
5:15 pm
[inaudible] two days ago, the head of the documenting genocide came out and said the whole process of documenting the genocide is only a quarter correct. the other content i would say is how do you convince a young boy, sunni muslim young boy, to join. [inaudible] he sees his father as a hero and he was killed as a cause and how would he betray his country. >> thank you for those twoe waso questions. one was supposed to someone not on the panel. could a microphone be given to the representative? >> thank you very much. thank you for the question. my understanding is that the mayor of. [inaudible]
5:16 pm
was removed was removed by the local counsel. it wasn't a political party's decision but the council's decision. i also understand that there has been a long-running investigation into that mayor and there had been a protest against him. this is my understanding of the situation there. more broadly, i would like to ask a question of this man is rightly concerned for his people. if the kurds, if the government and the people of kurdistan were so bad toward the questions the way you describe, why is it that almost every question left in iraq has taken shelter in curtis dan? they haven't chosen to go elsewhere. they have chosen to go to curtis i'm not saying it's perfect but it's the safest place for your community and other communities
5:17 pm
and even people who are muslim feel safer in kurdistan thanin they do elsewhere. [applause] >> i think it's an important conversation but i think if we could get to the question that was asked then there were other questions as well. [inaudible conversations] >> if i could summarize -- i thank you are underscoring that is something of criticalg importance. you have a very important --
5:18 pm
>> we can have this conversati conversation. >> we need to move this along. >> they did not disarm the syrians. no one said this at the time. this is something that lobbyists and russians are now raising. thank you very much for your y comments and i have heard everything over that you saidev and i'm happy to answer but i think the conversation is bigger than your little -- not your little but it's bigger than the dispute you're raising.e] there are many christians who disagree with you but the majority of christians disagree with you. please, let the others have thee conversation. >> when i used to play water polo competitively i never thought i would play the role of goalie and i never wanted it because it was the hardest position. being a moderator of any
5:19 pm
discussion is hard when you havp issues like this but i want to thank you for raising your concerns i want to thank those who left earlier for expressing their concerns. it is important to try torward identify and find a solution going forward to ensure that these communities are protected. they do have legitimate concerns and there is no one boys a represents nuclear community. i thank you for expressing that. there is an important question that also touched on how conditions should feel safe and that was posed by our colleague. [inaudible] i think it's a great question and a strategy to deal with thae it will have multiples and some of the things require an international community support and some of it requires iraqi government support and some of it requires some decisions by the community themselves and through a work of us id i know there are leaders in each community that are trying to
5:20 pm
view those issues and they are disciplined in the context is different from one to another and to convince a young man to go home has several layers of that and i've had some of those discussions. they do want to feel secure and they want to provide their own security so someone from weath weather. [inaudible] they want to provide their own insecurity and they want to prevent what happened and i think that's a right and important point and there are other actors in this conversation that may see that as a threat so this is why a conversation is necessary to say how each community and each actor where you can deal with them and address the mutual concerns and find a mechanism to
5:21 pm
deal with them and to the question about is somebody whose father was killed or a hero to him from another community at what time i would have explainea my imagery a little more because for the minorities isis came not from within their communities because it came from elsewhere. to protect the minorities you will have to put face cards to presenting another isis to come again from another force emerge. and attacked the majority. that's a difficult conversation as an institute we are raisingwe this issue and we are working on local and we are working on. [inaudible] for right now and were working on the question and we have done this and working in other places but more needs to be done and it's a very legitimate question and many actors are struggling with it.
5:22 pm
personally, there is no clear crystal answer to it. >> i think we need to wrap up at this time. for one i think we can take a few more questions than. this gentleman right here in the front. and there's a woman in the middle with the black and white -- you. thank you. go ahead. >> my name is robert and in 2015 because of what i saw in the sitar i went to fight with the kurds against isis and my basic question i have for you and i respect everything you have done any rack with the community but not all of the sled. [inaudible] fled to iraq. u unfortunately, they don't have the services that are provided in iraq due to the blockades a lot of needed humanitarian aid has not been brought to camp and
5:23 pm
other places like that and they are still in horrible humanitarian conditions and the question is what exactly have you done in syria to help the community there that is still suffering and still does not have relief from the situation. thank you. >> one more question for. >> my name is jolene and i am asking the question from an american perspective although i have worked in the middle east and i thank you all for having this, by the way. i think it's sorely needed. my question is what you just got through saying. you have isis out of their and if there isn't some form of government we will be fighting
5:24 pm
them again and again and again and my perspective on isis is just like any dictator or anyone who likes those who took over and it's not about religion but about money and power. what is the trump administration going to do to bring in some sort of government for this to not happen again. thank you very much. >> thanks for the question. [applause] [speaking in native tongue] >> we have two different communities. one of them has been abducted by
5:25 pm
iso- and also those who fled the war. [speaking in native tongue] of course, both of them have to work to save both of them. [speaking in native tongue] >> we know that there are some marketplaces where. [inaudible] [speaking in native tongue] original government has stopped us and telling by.
5:26 pm
[inaudible] [speaking in native tongue] >> i apologize that they didn't help us. [speaking in native tongue] you are right, in 2014 when our people fled most of them went to. [inaudible] and most of them came back to the region but some of them still left and some of them. [speaking in native tongue] of course, you know that for me
5:27 pm
and everyone everyone needs he help. >> thank you for highlighting the fact that there are large populations in syria who have sought refuge outside the realm of the international system as well. knox, would you respond to the question about the american perspective of what is being done. >> we are taking action in a number of different fronts. the overarching question we all need to ask yourself is what drove the iraqis to support isis. there are issues of governance, respect for human rights, other competing factors, right now we have a very good partner with the prime minister of iraq with committed to, as we heard the investor to say, an agenda that is inclusive and ensures all of iraq diverse components have a voice i might have a role in their government and we have seen with the iraqi security forces and their battle against
5:28 pm
isis a remarkable commitment to civilian protection to ensure that in liberating areas they are not destroying the communities they are trying to save so that they can be rebuilt and have confidence in their government that is protecting them. there's also the question of how do we defeat the ideology of isis, how do we encourage those voices who say no, this is not my fate and this is not the right way and how do we partner with them to see those perspectives and provide and those are debates that the iraqis need to have and we can't enter them but we want to ensure there is a framework so that they can occur. it will be different in the fight is not over, we need to remember that as well. we are committed, though, to continuing to partner with our iraqi friends to help ensure that the length of the
5:29 pm
minorities but for all iraqis that tomorrow is brighter than yesterday. >> i want to very quickly see if, lillian, you wanted to respond to any of the questions or comments that have been made. >> i would like to add something that is very important of the challenges and also to think about how to have a solution. oftentimes the main solution is how to find a solution for administrative issue in the area
5:30 pm
or the area of the minorities. [inaudible] also, to think about those forces from different groups. [inaudible] i was thinking of accommodations how we could find another. [inaudible] we can find a unified leadership for all of these weather question or -- can find leadership for them of operati
5:31 pm
operation. otherwise, we will see conflict between these forces. a week ago i walked into the area and there was a presentation between two groups. this is what was expected because these forces are from different political reality and one of the problems -- we should learn to evoke peace in that area and how to break the tension between the groups.
5:32 pm
[inaudible] we need to urge the iraqi government and arp to normalize this area from the tension and this is very important issue that i would like to raise because otherwise people. [inaudible] they are very eager to seek peace. for example, in september, next september, they should the government from baghdad. [inaudible]
5:33 pm
the people are now obliged and it will affect those even that they are not convinced because of this kind of conflict between the groups. this is what i would like to raise is to urge the iraqi government to help organizations and they should work through to repair and leave in peace. >> thank you, william. i think that is an appropriate place to wrap up the
5:34 pm
conversation. want to give an opportunity for ambassador to give comments and i understand there's a desire to do so in light of the conversation. there could be a microphone given -- is the microphone working? >> hello that is better. thank you for comparing iraq to a leaky ship in a storm. it was recently compared to the empty. in 2014 michael crowley had a cover page article in time magazine entitled the end of iraq. one thing that people will be surprised by and this is a prediction is that in a few years from now people will start writing articles on the
5:35 pm
resiliency of how it will have weathered the storm. [applause] and all this to say what we achieved is nothing short of miraculous. three, four years ago we were worried. baghdad was about to fall. here we are closing in on them and the objectives that we have is not to defeat isis but to make sure that they are there and never rise again. i want to close by one thing, where is this young man who wanted to know what arguments i could give him to go back to iraq. please, raise your hand. where are you? don't fear fear. okay but there are many psychological barriers against us to go back and help.
5:36 pm
one of the most heartwarming things that i have seen in the last two-three weeks is a conference organized by the world bank on the reconstruction of liberated areas. like i said, it gives me a lot of hope was the representative of chaldean americans who were very fortunate and very successful came to see him to see what they could do to help rebuild their ancestral areas and i know there's a sizable and very powerful and very capable iraq he community in the united states. think of what you can do to help us rebuild. think of the villages where your grandparents came and you yourself, think what you can do. this has been said before but what can you do for the country of your parents and your country. come back and help us. [applause]
5:37 pm
>> thank you very much. i'd also like to think us ip for hosting this. i think the nature of the discussion, some of which is heated, reflects the problems that we face in iraq but it is good to have a conversation. that is where dialogue begins and long-term negotiations begin. i would like to remind everyone that the third of august is the anniversary of the genocide of. [inaudible] and there will be a vigil outside the white house on the front, the north lawn, it's called at 8:00 p.m. i encourage all of you to come along and it's not organized by us but by the free is ed foundation. i encourage all of you to show solidarity with others who have suffered genocide at the hands of isis. thank you. [applause] >> thank you.
5:38 pm
maybe in summing up i will take a point that ambassador mentioned about resilience. i think that in this particular context, as we approach augus august 3rd -- isis attacked since our and moved into the nineveh planes and other christian communities. we could follow that as it was happening and we could follow it on social media, on twitter and see these communities in peril. these communities were calling for international assistance and that none was forthcoming. when it was in the us government did do airstrikes, dozens of lives were saved, tens of thousands of people's lives were saved. the resilience that i am marvel by as the resilience of these particular communities. the fact that they continue to try to seek ways to return home, the way they desire to remain in their own countries. that's a resilience that we need to applaud and we need to do
5:39 pm
everything we can to support. unfortunately, at times, we are feeling those particular communities and we fill them when we don't have the honest conversations about the realities of the conversations and realities on the ground. and when we ignore the fact that those particular communities were made vulnerable, in part, by the fact that there is an ongoing political dispute that we need to seek a resolution to. these communities need to be very much at the forefront of our future strategy for the us government and others. otherwise we will be back here talking about genocide again in another decade, in a decade after that. i would like to thank ambassador in the representative for being here for being open to these difficult conversations and i hope they will be able to continue to work with us ip on the remarkable work we're doing on the ground. these communities deserve much more than they are currently receiving in terms of support from the international
5:40 pm
community. with that, i'd like to end by saying these are very painful discussions. the crimes that happened were absolutely horrific. as a grandchild of a holocaust survivor, i can't imagine talking about what these people have had to endure. the wounds will fester if they are not addressed and we need to do everything we can to address these concerns. very, very sincere thank you for participating and maybe hopefully not have to be again here in the future talking about iraq and genocide. thank you. [applause]
5:41 pm
>> vice-president pence and housing and urban development secretary, ben carson, have remarks at the national conservative student conference. live coverage this evening at 7:20 p.m. eastern. >> i was hoping to get transportation in 2001 because my whole background is in trade and transportation. i was a transportation banker for a number of years, for both citicorp and bank of america. i had worked for transportation companies so, my whole background was actually in transportation. it's nice, now, to return to a field in which i had worked previously and it's nice to be able to be back in a department that i am familiar. >> water interview with elaine, secretary of transportation in the trump administration. tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span, c-span radio, and c-span .org.
5:42 pm
>> a confirmation hearing for three of the president's nominees. commerce undersecretary for international trade and two from the deferment of health and human services. the nominees testify before the senate finance committee. >> welcome to all of you folks to this morning's hearing. today we will consider the nomination of the under secretary of commerce of trade, assistant secretary of legislation of health and human services, and general counsel of health and human services. i would like to extend a warm welcome to each of these nomination here today and i want to extend congratulations for your nominations. thank you for your willingness to serve in these important positions. in today's hearing i want to stress two major


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on