Small Wars Journal

Iraq Considers Deepening Military Ties With Russia

Iraq Considers Deepening Military Ties With Russia by Qassim Abdul-Zahra and Samya Kullab - Associated Press

BAGHDAD - Iraq and Russia discussed prospects for deepening military coordination, Iraq’s Defense Ministry said Thursday, amid a strain in Baghdad-Washington relations after a U.S. airstrike killed a top Iranian general inside Iraq.

The ministry statement followed a meeting in Baghdad between Iraqi army chief of staff Lt. Gen. Othman Al-Ghanimi and Russian Ambassador Maksim Maksimov, as well as a newly arrived defense attache.

The meeting comes during an uncertain moment in the future of Iraq-U.S. military relations, following the Jan. 3 U.S. drone strike that killed Iran’s most powerful military commander, Gen. Qassem Soleimani, and Iraqi senior militia leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis near Baghdad airport. The attack prompted powerful Shiite parties to call for an overhaul of the existing strategic set-up between Iraq and the U.S.-led coalition…

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