iraq

Iraq MPs call for timetable for foreign troop pullout

Parliament expresses gratitude to 74-country coalition in fight against Daesh

AFP
16:56 March 1, 2018

Baghdad: Iraq’s parliament called for the government to draw up a timetable for the withdrawal of foreign troops from the country in a resolution passed on Thursday, the speaker’s office said.

“The Iraqi parliament expresses its gratitude to all countries which have supported Iraq in its fight against Daesh and calls for the government to draw up a timetable for the withdrawal of foreign troops,” it said in a statement.

Washington in October 2014 forged a 74-country coalition, as well as international organisations such as NATO, to assist Iraqi forces in a fightback against Daesh which at the time had seized swathes of the country and posed a military threat to Baghdad.

On February 5, the coalition announced it was “adjusting” its force levels in Iraq downward as it shifted away from combat operations following the militants’ expulsion from all Iraqi urban centres.

Brigadier General Jonathan Braga, the coalition’s director of operations, said “an appropriate amount of capabilities” would be kept in Iraq in addition to the forces needed to train, advise and equip the Iraqis.

Such a presence would be coordinated with the Iraqi government, said the coalition, whose main force is made up of 5,000 US soldiers in Iraq.