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US Troops From Syria Staying in Iraq Just 4 Weeks

US Troops From Syria Staying in Iraq Just 4 Weeks
U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper, left, and Iraqi Defense Minister Najah al-Shammari stand during a welcome ceremony at the Ministry of Defense, Baghdad, Iraq, Wednesday.  (Hadi Mizban/AP)

Wednesday, 23 October 2019 06:03 AM

Iraq's defense minister has said after meeting U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper that American forces withdrawing from Syria to Iraq will leave the country within four weeks.

Defense Minister Najah al-Shammari made the remarks to The Associated Press on Wednesday, following a meeting with Esper, who arrived in Baghdad a day to discuss the troops.

He says that the American troops crossing from Syria are "transiting" in Iraq and will then head either to Kuwait, Qatar or the United States.

Iraq's military said Tuesday that American troops leaving northeastern Syria don't have permission to stay in Iraq in a statement that appeared to contradict Esper, who has said that all U.S. troops leaving Syria would continue to conduct operations against the Islamic State group from Iraq to prevent its resurgence in the region.

Esper had said earlier on Wednesday that he planned to talk with Iraqi leaders about the matter.

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Iraq's defense minister has said after meeting U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper that American forces withdrawing from Syria to Iraq will leave the country within four weeks.
ML, Iraq, US, The, Latest
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2019-03-23
Wednesday, 23 October 2019 06:03 AM
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