Pentagon Downplays Deal On Redeployment Of US Troops In Iraq As 'Not New'

Pentagon Downplays Deal on Redeployment of US Troops in Iraq as 'Not New'

WASHINGTON (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 08th April, 2021) Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby on Wednesday downplayed recent developments of a redeployment of American forces in Iraq as not new.

The US and Iraqi governments have reportedly agreed to a gradual withdrawal of foreign coalition forces from the Middle-eastern country.

"One of the things they agreed to in this was to continue to have technical talks going forward about the potential redeployment, so that is a new thing in the document, but the idea that there would eventually be a redeployment of US forces in Iraq is not new," Kirby said during a press briefing. "We have always known that eventually there's going to be a redeployment of forces from Iraq."

A third round of US-Iraqi strategic talks began on Wednesday with the goal of clarifying the status of the troops of the international anti-terrorist coalition led by Washington in Iraq. The two previous meetings were held last June and August.

National Security Adviser to the Iraqi Prime Minister Qassem Al-Araji said in earlier remarks that both sides agreed to have no foreign military bases in the country.

In addition, the official said the two delegations decided that the fight against the Islamic State terrorist group (banned in Russia) would be conducted exclusively by the Iraqi troops.

In early 2020, the Iraqi parliament voted to end the presence of all foreign forces in the country in response to Washington's decision to launch a drone attack near Baghdad International Airport that killed senior Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani. According to Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, the potential of the national security services has increased significantly and will soon enable the country to forgo the need for foreign forces.

The United States currently has 2,500 troops in Iraq.