Interview with U.S. Congressman Jeff Fortenberry, Sponsor of Resolution on Genocide by ISIS

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Exclusive Interview by Dakhil Shammo – VOA Kurdish Service:

U.S. Representative Jeff Fortenberry of Nebraska’s 1st Congressional district talks to Dakhil Shammo of VOA about the Yazidi plight, the war against ISIS and the roles of the U.S. and the Kurds in the region.

Here KT publishes a transcript along with the video of the interview:

DS: You have said that the security risks of the Middle East migrant crisis must be confronted and resolved to keep the world safe. What should be done to make the world safer without harming US values and principles?

JF: Well, it is a hard question, it is a complicated question, but at a level of first principle if you will, persons have to have their lives protected; that is a fundamental aspect of human dignity and it’s also essential to the principles of civilization itself. So the responsible nations of the world, the United States with partner countries, must try to attack the root causes of what is causing so many people to have to flee their homes. The United States shouldn’t do this alone nor can we do it alone. It is particularly incumbent in the Middle East for Sunni Arab nations to fight for values, to fight for the protection of innocent lives, to fight for the principles of civilizations and stability and order itself. So this is why the horrific manifestation of persons having to flee for their lives and leave their homes has left all of these questions somewhat unanswered.

But as an immediate concern, you have to try to take care and position people as close to where they came from as possible. And then you have to work on the ultimate political, economic and security settlements that create stability and the right of return to people who have had to flee and for the future of their participation in governance structures for their own safety and well-being. This is what’s so tragic, particularly about the loss and the persecution of religious minorities in the Middle East because ISIS’s systemic attempt to exterminate them.

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U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (AP Photo/Anja Niedringhaus)

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