- Iraq’s parliament passed a resolution that told the government to end the presence of foreign troops in the country and restrict the use of its resources.
- Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi called for the resolution “for the sake of our national sovereignty.”
- The vote was one of the first moves in the country’s response to the US killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, a top Iranian military official.
- Shortly after the vote, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo publicly defended the ongoing presence of US troops in Iraq, saying he was “confident the Iraqi people want the United States to continue to be there.”
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Iraq’s parliament passed a resolution on Sunday that said the government should end the presence of foreign troops in the country, and restrict the use of its resources.
“The government commits to revoke its request for assistance from the international coalition fighting Islamic State due to the end of military operations in Iraq and the achievement of victory,” the resolution read, according to Reuters. “The Iraqi government must work to end the presence of any foreign troops on Iraqi soil and prohibit them from using its land, airspace or water for any reason.”
Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi called for the parliament to move to end the presence of foreign troops in the country, saying Sunday that a vote was necessary “for the sake of our national sovereignty.”
Though it is a non-binding resolution, it was an early move from the country in its response to the US airstrike that successfully killed Gen. Qassem Soleimani, a top Iranian military official.
The strike set off concerns among American lawmakers and international authorities about a possible escalation in tensions with the Middle East, though President Donald Trump’s administration has insisted the targeted mission was a necessary response and a move towards peace.
Shortly after the special vote was reported, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo publicly defended the presence of American troops in Iraq, saying on “Fox News Sunday” that he was “confident the Iraqi people” support a continued US presence and blamed the prime minister’s close ties to Iran for the vote.
“The prime minister is the acting prime minister,” Pompeo told host Chris Wallace. “He’s under enormous threats from the very Iranian leadership that we are pushing back against and we’re confident the Iraqi people want the United States to continue to be there.”
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo joined FOX News Sunday to discuss breaking news regarding heightened US-Iran tensions in the wake of an attack that killed Soleimani. The Trump administration says he was planning imminent attacks. Secretary Pompeo reacts. #FNS #foxnews pic.twitter.com/zo7nkdtrZ1
— FoxNewsSunday (@FoxNewsSunday) January 5, 2020
As of March 2019, the US had an estimated 5,200 troops in Iraq.
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