Iraqi prime minister says he would ‘welcome’ Russian airstrikes in Iraq

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi has also said Baghdad would welcome Russian air strikes against Islamic State in his country on Iraqi soil.

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It added that the Syrian army is poised to launch a wide-scale offensive under the Russian air support against the jihadi groups in the southern part of Hama province in central Syria.

Iraq’s most powerful Iranian-backed Shi’ite militia said on Monday it would welcome Russian air strikes on Islamic State militants in the country, in comments likely to raise American concern over Moscow’s growing influence in the Middle East. I believe that we have answered the Iraqi call, he said.

The reality is that there are no “moderates” in Syria, and certainly not among the rebel Islamist groups: they’re all jihadists who want to impose Sharia law, drive out Christians, Alawites, and other minority groups, and set up an Islamic dictatorship. He said these would be studied further before deciding whether to hold further talks.

“We are not yet where we need to be to guarantee the safety and security” of those carrying out the airstrikes, Kerry said, “and that is the discussion that is taking place today”, referring to the US-Russia military talks.

The moderator, Andrea Mitchell of NBC News, asked Johnson how the government plans to screen the large number of Syrian refugees attempting to come to the U.S.

But Warren said the coalition had over the past year allocated more than $2.3 billion – $1.6 billion of which was provided by the United States – to its “train and equip” programme which saw thousands of military advisers deployed to Iraq.

The Syrian opposition has claimed that non-IS rebel factions opposed to Syrian President Bashar Assad – the Kremlin’s ally – are taking the brunt of the Russian attacks. “It’s easy, then, to exchange factual data where you’re going to operate”.

At least 9 civilians including three civil defense personnel were reportedly killed on Saturday as Russian military jets pounded Ihsim area of Jabal al-Zawiyah region in Idlib province.

The United States policy of fighting Daesh (ISIL) has been exposed as deeply flawed and cynical by Russia’s military intervention against that terrorist group in Syria, a geopolitical analyst in New York says.

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“While there is always danger of conflict, of inadvertent contact” between coalition and Russian warplanes, “we are continuing with our operations”, Warren told reporters at the Pentagon.

Russian soldiers at the Hmeymim base in Syria