Germany–Iraq relations

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German-Iraqi relations
Map indicating locations of Germany and Iraq


German embassy in Baghdad, Iraq.

German-Iraqi relations are foreign relations between Germany and Iraq. Iraq has an embassy in Berlin, while Germany has an embassy in Baghdad.

There are currently some 84,000–150,000 Iraqis living in Germany.

History of relations[edit]

Relations with GDR (East Germany)[edit]

Iraq had full diplomatic recognition to the GDR, being the only non communist regime to do so at the time. Iraq's full diplomatic recognition of East Germany and Foreign Minister Otto Winzer's acknowledgement of that recognition were announced in Neues Deutschland on 2 May 1969.

The Iraqi decision did not come entirely as a surprise, following as it did the extended visit by Foreign Minister Abdul Karim al-Shaykhli to the Soviet Union and East Germany from 20 to 31 March 1969, in which as a result of this visit, discussions amounted to both countries tightening relations and taking further "steps for deepening cooperation in political, economic and cultural fields." Iraq had thus become the fourteenth state to fully recognize East Germany (in addition to the thirteen "socialist" states) and the first of the non aligned or "third" world nation to make this decision.

During the Baath Party Congress in Bagdad in early February 1969, recognition of East Germany was loudly demanded for the first time, and thereafter Foreign Minister Otto Winzer warmly greeted his Iraqi counterpart both in Baghdad and in East Berlin. In an interview given to the East German weekly Horizont, where the head of the Iraqi state, Hassan El-Bakr, stated:

"Aside from the fact that we are two socialist republics and have common aims, we recall with pride and joy the attitude taken by the GDR in condemning aggression, in supporting the Arab cause, and we remember the fact that the GDR does not maintain any relations with the aggressor, and that it combats imperialism and colonialism. Again, we have to thank the GDR for this attitude."[1]

The thanks had been made in the form of statehood recognition.

Concerning East German–Iraqi trade, at that time, Iraqi exports to the whole Eastern Bloc amount only to one half of its exports to the Federal Republic. In 1968, West Germany imported Iraqi crude oil valued at 184 million marks, in addition to other imports for two million marks. West German exports at that same time amounted to 81 million marks, with a regressive tendency since East Germany was increasingly exporting to Iraq.

Relations with FRG (West Germany and reunified Germany)[edit]

Although Iraq had relations with East Germany, the Federal Republic of Germany and Iraq maintained ease relations. In 1965, Iraq and the other Arab states severed relations with the FRG following the establishment of relations with Israel. The ties were later restored.

Germany along with China, Russia, France, and Belgium, steadfastly countered the proposal for the 2003 Invasion. After the Gulf War in 1990/91 and during the period of occupation after the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime, diplomatic relations had been continued to a limited degree.

In August 2014, the German government announced that it would be supplying weapons to Kurdish peshmerga forces fighting ISIL. The shipments include arms, armor, and communications equipment; the German ministry of defence reported that the military aid will be enough to supply 4,000 Kurdish peshmerga forces.[2]

The military aid, worth approximately €70 million, includes 8,000 G36 rifles and four million rounds of ammunition, 8,000 G3 rifles and two million rounds of ammunition, 8,000 P1 pistols and one million rounds of ammunition, 40 MG3 machine guns and one million rounds of ammunition, 200 Panzerfaust 3 rocket-propelled grenade launchers and 2,500 rocket propelled grenades, 30 MILAN anti tank missile systems and 500 missiles, 40 Wolf light utility vehicle and 20 armored Wolf light utility vehicles, 40 UNIMOG trucks, and 5 Dingo-1 infantry mobility vehicles.[3]

By December 2014, in support of the US-led military intervention against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, the German Cabinet approved the deployment of up to 100 Bundeswehr troops to northern Iraq to train peshmerga forces.[4]

Economic relations[edit]

Iraq was historically a strong partner for Germany, and in the 1980s bilateral trade reached four billion euros (6.4 billion dollars) a year. [2]

Estimates for 2006 put imports from Iraq at EUR 13.5 million and exports to Iraq at EUR 368.4 million. Between February 2006 and February 2007, Germany imported approx. 66,000 t of crude oil from Iraq. Iraq thus accounted for 0.05% of Germany’s total crude oil imports and ranked 26th among Germany’s suppliers of crude oil.

In June 2008, a German–Iraqi economic commission was resuscitated for the first time since 1987, under the oversight of Economy Minister Michael Glos to Baghdad and Iraqi Industry Minister Fawzi al-Hariri.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1][permanent dead link]
  2. ^ "Germany to arm Kurdish forces fighting Islamic State in Iraq". Deutsche Welle. Deutsche Welle. dpa/AP. 31 August 2014. Retrieved 5 February 2015.
  3. ^ Kimball, Spencer (1 September 2014). "German weapons deliveries to Iraq's Kurdish region". Deutsche Welle. Deutsche Welle. Retrieved 5 February 2015.
  4. ^ Hudson, Alexandra. Evans, Dominic (ed.). "German cabinet approves training mission to Iraq". Reuters (17 December 2014). Reuters. Retrieved 5 February 2015.

External links[edit]

Media related to Relations of Germany and Iraq at Wikimedia Commons