Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi addresses the media in Ankara December 25, 2014. REUTERS/Umit Bektas (TURKEY – Tags: POLITICS) – RTR4J8X5
Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) Iraqi Prime Minister has unveiled a governmental plan to gradually reduce the number of forces working under the U.S.-led Coalition in Iraq.
During a weekly press briefing held in Baghdad, PM Haidar al-Abadi indicated, “a governmental plan drawn to reduce number of forces of the international coalition in Iraq gradually.”
Abadi added that “Iraq still needs the airforce of the coalition.”
Earlier on the day, Saeed al-Jayyashi, security adviser to the Iraqi government was quoted saying that a security commission will be developed to rearrange the international coalition’s mission in Iraq from combat duties to the training and improvement of Iraqi security services.
Later after the Iraqi announcement, Eric Pahon spokesman of the Pentagon, was quoted saying that U.S. troops were only shifting mission from combat to training, without plans for a sharp drawdown of troops.
In related news, two Iranian-backed Shiite groups in Iraq have urged total withdrawal of U.S. forces in the country.
Badr organization, one of the biggest armed factions that is close to the government, said presence of U.S. troops in the country will be a source of instability, Reuters reported.
The two governments should coordinate to ensure a full withdrawal. U.S. presence will be cause for internal polarization and a magnet for terrorists,” the organization spokesperson, Kareem Nuri told Reuters.
Moreover, the Kataib Hezbollah have threatened attacks against U.S. troops. On Monday, Jaafar al-Husseini, the spokesperson, told Beirut-based al-Mayadeen TV, “We are serious about getting the Americans out, using the force of arms because the Americans don’t understand any other language.”
The Pentagon had said in December it was keeping nearly 5000 troops in Iraq.