Rocket hits Baghdad as US-Iraq dialogue set to launch

Al-Monitor | Ali Mamouri: In order to reorganize the relationship between the two countries in various aspects, Iraq and the United States are negotiating over a new strategic agreement.

The United States and Iraq were to begin a “strategic dialogue” June 11, held via video conference due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The dialogue was proposed in April by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Iraqi security officials said a Katyusha rocket hit the Green Zone the night of June 10, just hours before the talks were to kick off. No casualties were reported.

Although Iraq and the United States previously signed a security agreement that ended the presence of US troops in Iraq by the end of 2011, Iraq requested US military assistance in 2014 when the Islamic State (IS) occupied a third of Iraqi territory. Subsequently, the United States led a coalition in Iraq to help fight IS. After IS’ defeat, the United States left about 5,000 troops help Iraq maintain security.

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