Iraq opposes US over Syria

13 Dec 2011 - 8:47

Islam Times - Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has challenged the US position on Syria, expressing opposition to any military attack against Iraq's neighbor.

Speaking in a joint press conference with US President Barack Obama in the White House on Monday, Maliki said he does not support imposing sanctions on Damascus and that the Iraqi premier has no right to call on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down.

He also expressed hope that the Syrian unrest would be resolved so as not to affect Iraq's security.

"Iraq is a country that is bordering on Syria, and I'm concerned about the interest of Iraq and the interest of the security of the region," Maliki said.

“I wish that what is required by the Syrian people will be achieved without affecting the security of Iraq. And I know the two countries are related to each other and we must be very prudent in dealing with this matter," he added.

Obama, for his part, said Washington and Baghdad have different “tactical” views on Syrian unrest, but the Iraqi premier has the interests of Iraq in mind.

“Even if there are tactical disagreements between Iraq and the United States at this point in how to deal with Syria, I have absolutely no doubt that these decisions are being made based on what Prime Minister Maliki believes is best for Iraq,” Obama noted.

The United States, which has been calling on President Assad to step down, has outraged Syrians by threatening to impose sanctions against the country and encouraging other governments and international bodies to follow suit.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since mid-March, with demonstrations being held both against and in support of Assad's government.

Confessions by captured Syrian armed terrorists about foreign-sponsored plans to carry out armed activities and killing ordinary people as well as security forces prove that the recent developments in Syria are aimed at inciting a revolt in the strategic country neighboring the Israeli regime, and bringing to power a US- and Israel-friendly government.

Story Code: 121850

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