The President of the Iraqi Parliament Osama Najafi met with President Barack Obama this week. At the January 22 interview, Najafi delivered two letters to Obama, one of which deals specifically with the persecution of Christians in the war-torn country. According to a statement from Najafi's office, the letter described "the main obstacles to the advancement of the political process in Iraq" and proposals for advancing democracy in Iraq.
According to Najafi's statement, Obama confirmed the U.S. commitment to cooperating with Iraq and the provision of aid.
During the same meeting, the matter of the recruitment of Sunni tribal militias to the Iraqi army was discussed.
Osama Najafi is a member of the Sunni sect of Islam and was born in Mosul. He intervened in 2008 during the violence perpetrated against Christians in his hometown. He attributed the violence to Kurdish armed groups who sought to change the demographic balance of the area in favor of Muslims.
Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. He is also a freelance translator.