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Blinken Visits Iraq in Hopes of Containing Israel-Hamas War
Amid concerns that the conflict in Gaza could spill across the Middle East, the U.S. secretary of state, Antony J. Blinken, met with Iraqi officials and U.S. personnel to reaffirm the United States’ commitment to protecting its partners.
There have been a series of attacks conducted by militia directed at our personnel, both in Iraq as well as in Syria. Job number one for me is to ensure the security of our people. And so I got an update on everything we’re doing to make sure that our personnel are safe and secure. I had a good, productive, candid meeting with Prime Minister al-Sudani. And there were really two areas of focus for me in that meeting. The first was to reaffirm our commitment to our partnership with Iraq. The threats coming from militia that are aligned with Iran are totally unacceptable, and we will take every necessary step to protect our people. We’re not looking for conflict with Iran; we’ve made that very clear. But we’ll do what’s necessary to protect our personnel, be they military or civilian. To anyone who might seek to take advantage of the conflict in Gaza to threaten our personnel here or anywhere else in the region: Don’t do it.
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