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Pentagon Chief starts a visit to Baghdad

Mark Esper

US Defense Secretary Mark Esper has arrived in Baghdad, a day after the US troops pulled out of Syria and crossed the border into Iraq.


"Our key priority with Iraq is encouraging the continued secure, stable, independent Iraq," a senior US defense official said earlier.


During the visit, Esper is expected to meet with his Iraqi counterpart as well as Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi.


The withdrawal of US troops, under the current situation in the efforts to eradicate ISIS, as well as the crisis in northern Syria at the wake of the Turkish military incursion are expected to be on the visit’s agenda.


The visit comes in the wake of an agreement between Ankara and Moscow that allows the deployment of Russian military police and Syrian regime army to the border areas of northeast Syria after the removal of the Kurdish fighters of the People’s Protection Units (YPG).

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