US to resume joint military operations with Iraq to fight against IS

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Jan 16, 2020, 02.49 PM(IST)

File photo: US forces Photograph:( Zee News Network )

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Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo on Monday said that top Iraqi leaders still support the US troops despite public appeals to get rid of them.

The United States has resumed joint military operations with the Iraqi forces after a long pause due to risen tensions after the death of top Iranian general General Qassem Soleimani after a US drone strike conducted near Baghdad airport.

The American based newspaper quoted two US military officials who said the Pentagon wanted to resume these operations to pick up the fight against the Islamic State group.

The operations were halted, two days after the drone strike on January 5. Iran retaliated by attack two US army bases in Iraq with Ballistic Missiles. 

Though Iran's media claimed 80 casualties, according to the Whitehouse no casualties were inflicted.

The attacks just resulted in further sanctions on Iran.

On the same day after the halt, Iraqi lawmakers passed a bill in the parliament to expel 5,000 US troops that are present in Iraq and Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi asked Whitehouse to work out a road map for the troop withdrawal. But the US rejected the bill.

Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo on Monday said that top Iraqi leaders still support the US troops despite public appeals to get rid of them.

He even, in fact, said that the forces were critical to the fight against the Islamic State group.

Pompeo said at a forum at Stanford University: "They won't say so publicly. But privately they all welcome the fact that America is still there executing its counter-terror campaign,".