Iraq rejects permanent US bases

Iraq will never allow the United States to keep permanent military bases on its soil, the government's national security adviser has said.

Iraq rejects permanent US bases
"We need the United States in our war against terrorism, we need them to guard our border sometimes, we need them for economic support and we need them for diplomatic and political support," Mowaffaq Al Rubaie said.

"But I say one thing, permanent forces or bases in Iraq for any foreign forces is a red line that cannot be accepted by any nationalist Iraqi," he said, speaking to Dubai-based al Arabiya television in an interview broadcast late on Monday.

The United States has around 160,000 troops in Iraq, officially under a United Nations mandate enacted after the US-led invasion in 2003.

Iraq formally asked the United Nations on Monday to renew that mandate for a year until the end of 2008 but made clear it would not extend it beyond next year, and that the mandate could be revoked sooner at Iraq's request.

US President George W. Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Al Maliki signed a "declaration of principles" last month agreeing to friendly long-term relations, but arrangements for US troops to stay beyond next year have yet to be negotiated.


Agencies

Güncelleme Tarihi: 11 Aralık 2007, 13:15
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