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Iraqi PM: Iraq Will Not Be Ground for Settling Accounts

Iraqi PM: Iraq Will Not Be Ground for Settling Accounts

Sunday, 10 May, 2020 - 10:45
Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi receives US Ambassador Matthew H. Tueller, Iraqi government agencies

Iraq’s newly appointed prime minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi met with US Ambassador Matthew H. Tueller and Iranian Ambassador Iraj Masjedi.

Kadhimi discussed bilateral relations, including cooperation and coordination, with Tueller.

He also ruled out Iraq as the ground for "settling accounts" by the US and its rival Iran.

During his meeting with Tueller, Kadhimi underscored the need for bilateral cooperation in the economic and security fields, as well as for preparing for the strategic dialogue between the two countries, the prime minister's media office said in a statement.

Kadhimi’s meeting with Tuller comes at a time Baghdad and Washington are preparing for a strategic dialogue, slotted for mid-June, about the future of US presence in Iraq. Iraqi parties close to Iran have been demanding the US withdraws its forces from Iraq.

Kadhimi also asserted the need to maintain security and stability in the region, while reiterating that Iraq will not be a ground for settling accounts and launching attacks on any neighboring or friendly country, the statement said.

Tueller congratulated Kadhimi for taking office after gaining the confidence of the Iraqi parliament, confirming the US readiness to support Iraq in all aspects, particularly in the economic field and in containing the COVID-19 spread, the statement added.

During his meeting with Masjedi, Kadhimi confirmed Iraq's keenness to maintain the best relations with all neighboring countries to serve regional security and stability, Kadhimi's media office said in a separate statement.

“Kadhimi stressed that Iraq will not be a passage or hotbed for terrorism against any country or a ground for settling accounts,” the statement said.

Kadhimi's comments came amid the rising tensions between Iran and the U.S. on the Iraqi soil, since the US assassination of Qassem Soleimani, commander of the Quds Force of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, deputy chief of Iraq's paramilitary Hashd Shaabi forces, in a drone attack near Iraqi capital Baghdad in January.

The Iranian-backed militias have frequently attacked Iraqi military bases housing US troops across Iraq as well as the US embassy inside the heavily fortified Green Zone in central Baghdad.

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