Published: Tue, March 21, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

Iraq, Saudi Arabia on Track to 'Good' Relationship - Prime Minister Abadi

Iraq, Saudi Arabia on Track to 'Good' Relationship - Prime Minister Abadi

"One of the things I did ask is, 'Why did President Obama sign that agreement with Iran?' because nobody has been able to figure that one out", Trump said.

Even before Trump took office, Iraqi forces recaptured a string of major cities from Islamic State, shrank the militant group's finances and significantly stemmed the flow of foreign fighters, all with the support of USA -led coalition air strikes and military advisers.

"We are in the last chapter, the final stages to eliminate IS militarily in Iraq", he said in a video statement.

His comments go one step farther in his criticism of the 2011 withdrawal of United States troops from Iraq after in the past saying that the withdrawal was made too early, that it was handled badly and that it should have been accompanied by seizing Iraqi oil.

"But of course we have to be careful here", Abadi said.

President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, Monday, March 20, 2017. "We should never ever have left, and the vacuum was created, and we discussed what happened", Trump said after the two leaders met in the Oval office. "In order to provide this assurance, we should be prepared to assist Iraq in a program of decentralization, reconciliation, and security sector reform". "I think we are happy with the [White House] meeting. and we're looking forward to meeting with Congress and others", he said. "We've been here a short while and people have said they'd never seen such a difference", Trump said.

The letter comes following Trump's first meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi.

Furthermore, the senators ask for an immediate response to the humanitarian crisis in Iraq by committing "significant energy and resources to stabilize and secure areas liberated from ISIS, and assist Iraq's displaced communities in returning to their homes".

Abadi spoke as Iraqi forces made steady progress in seizing back Mosul, Iraq's second largest city, from Islamic State, which officials expect will become a more classic insurgency once it loses its last major strongholds.

During a 2016 visit to Washington, Abadi sought additional financial and military support for the daunting task of rebuilding Iraqi cities ravaged by 14 years of war.

But the extent of Washington's commitment to providing such aid remains unclear, shrouded by proposals to cut as much as 30 percent in funding from the budgets of the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development.

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