Ministers ‘lobbying’ for release of British archaeologist Jim Fitton from Iraq prison | ITV News

ITV News published this video item, entitled “Ministers ‘lobbying’ for release of British archaeologist Jim Fitton from Iraq prison | ITV News” – below is their description.

The government is “lobbying” for British archaeologist Jim Fitton to be released from prison in Iraq, according to Foreign Secretary Liz Truss.

Mr Fitton, from Bath, was jailed for 15 years at the start of June for attempting to smuggle artefacts out of the country, a crime which also carries the death penalty.

His family has been critical of the Foreign Office, saying there’s been a lack of response to his case from the government department.

But when asked about it, Ms Truss revealed to ITV News: “We are working to lobby the Iraqi government on this.”

Read more here: https://www.itv.com/news/2022-06-30/ministers-lobbying-for-release-of-uk-archaeologist-from-iraq-itv-news-told

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In This Story: Iraq

Iraq, officially the Republic of Iraq, is a country in Western Asia. The capital and largest city is Baghdad. Iraq is home to diverse ethnic groups including Arabs, Kurds, Turkmen, Assyrians, Yazidis, Shabakis, Armenians, Mandaeans, Circassians, Sabians and Kawliya. Around 99% of the country’s 38 million citizens are Muslims, with small minorities of Christians, Yarsans, Yezidis and Mandeans also present. The official languages of Iraq are Arabic and Kurdish.

Iraq has a coastline measuring 58 km (36 miles) on the northern Persian Gulf and encompasses the Mesopotamian Alluvial Plain, the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range and the eastern part of the Syrian Desert. Two major rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates, run south through Iraq and into the Shatt al-Arab near the Persian Gulf. These rivers provide Iraq with significant amounts of fertile land. The region between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, historically known as Mesopotamia, is often referred to as the cradle of civilisation.

Iraq is a federal parliamentary republic consisting of 19 governorates, four of which make up the autonomous Kurdistan Region. Disputes over the sovereignty of Kurdistan Region continue.

Iraq is a founding member of the UN as well as of the Arab League, OIC, Non-Aligned Movement and the IMF.

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