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The Tennessee World Affairs Council
in association with
Public Affairs Program
Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman
Kurdistan Regional Government Representative to the United States
April 5, 2016
Details to Follow
Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman, KRG Representative to the United States
Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman is the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Representative to the United States of a forward-looking emerging democracy that saw its first free elections in 1992. The Kurdistan Regional Government seeks to build a federal, pluralistic, democratic and united Iraq.
Key to her role as Representative are strengthening ties between Kurdistan Region and the United States of America, advocating the government’s position on a wide array of political and economic matters and promoting coordination and partnership between the Kurdistan Region and the United States by encouraging inward investment which is important to the revival and stability of Kurdistan and Iraq as a whole. Prior to the appointment of KRG Representative to the US, Ms. Abdul Rahman was the High Representative to the United Kingdom.
Before her two political appointments as a Representative, Ms. Abdul Rahman worked as a journalist for 17 years. She began her career on local newspapers in London and won the Observer Newspaper’s Farzad Bazoft Memorial Prize in 1993, which led her to work at The Observer and later at the Financial Times. She worked for the FT in Britain and in Japan, where she was Tokyo Correspondent.
Her late father, Sami Abdul Rahman, was a veteran of the Kurdish movement, joining the Kurdistan Democratic Party in 1963 and playing a critical role in the Kurdish and Iraqi opposition to Saddam Hussein’s regime. He held the post of Deputy Prime Minister of the Kurdistan Regional Government and General Secretary of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP). Sami Abdul Rahman was killed alongside his elder son Salah and 96 others in a twin suicide bombing in 2004.
Ms. Abdul Rahman was born in Baghdad. Her family briefly lived in Iran in the mid-1970s before moving to Britain in 1976. She is a history graduate from London University.