Us, Joe Biden, Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, Iraq

Us, Joe Biden

Biden, Kadhimi seal agreement to end US combat mission in Iraq

Biden, Kadhimi seal agreement to end US combat mission in Iraq

26/7/2021 11:05:00 PM

Biden, Kadhimi seal agreement to end US combat mission in Iraq

(Corrects Biden quote in paragraph four to say 'combat mission', not 'combat zone')

The shift is not expected to have a major impact since the United States has already moved toward focusing on training Iraqi forces.A US-led coalition invaded Iraq in March 2003 based on charges that then-Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's government possessed weapons of mass destruction. Saddam was ousted from power, but such weapons were never found.

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In recent years the US mission was dominated by helping defeat Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria.Advertisement"Nobody is going to declare mission accomplished. The goal is the enduring defeat of ISIS," a senior administration official told reporters ahead of Kadhimi's visit.

The reference was reminiscent of the large"Mission Accomplished" banner on the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier above where Bush gave a speech declaring major combat operations over in Iraq on May 1, 2003."If you look to where we were, where we had Apache helicopters in combat, when we had US special forces doing regular operations, it's a significant evolution. So by the end of the year we think we'll be in a good place to really formally move into an advisory and capacity-building role," the official said. headtopics.com

US diplomats and troops in Iraq and Syria were targeted in three rocket and drone attacks earlier this month. Analysts believed the attacks were part of a campaign by Iranian-backed militias.The senior administration official would not say how many US troops would remain on the ground in Iraq for advising and training.

Kadhimi is seen as friendly to the United States and has tried to check the power of Iran-aligned militias. But his government condemned a US air raid against Iran-aligned fighters along its border with Syria in late June, calling it a violation of Iraqi sovereignty.

The US-Iraqi statement is expected to detail a number of non-military agreements related to health, energy and other matters.The United States plans to provide Iraq with 500,000 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine under the global COVAX vaccine-sharing program. Biden said the doses should arrive in a couple of weeks.

The United States will also provide US$5.2 million to help fund a UN mission to monitor October elections in Iraq."We're looking forward to seeing an election in October," said Biden. Read more: CNA »

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Combat mission? That's invasion of a sovereign nation!!

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