Campaign against ISIS will enter ‘new phase’ in Iraq: US Ambassador Tueller

US Ambassador to Iraq Matthew Tueller (file)

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SULAIMANI — US Ambassador to Iraq Matthew Tueller said on Monday (September 13) that the campaign against Islamic State (ISIS) will enter "a new phase” in Iraq by the end of 2021.

Tueller said in an interview with al-Hurra channel that the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and the Peshmerga were partners in defeating ISIS, but there must be "stronger coordination” between them.

"Our role is to empower the Iraqi forces to ensure that ISIS does not return,” he said.

Despite the defeat of the territorial caliphate, ISIS militants continue to launch attacks against civilian and military targets in parts of Iraq, including the disputed areas.

Tueller also condemned attacks in the Kurdistan Region’s Erbil, saying that they are "a threat to the people of Iraq and the stability of the country”.

"Iraq's neighbors want to see the activities of armed militias under the watch of the Iraqi government,” he said.

Regarding the Iranian influence in the country, the US ambassador said that any Iranian influence in Iraq is "hostile” to the US.

He stressed that "President Biden made it clear that the security of Iraq is the security of the Middle East,” adding that "Iraq is a country with enormous resources and the policies of previous governments did not exploit them well.”

(NRT Digital Media)