BRUSSELS, Jan. 6 (EUROPE PRESS) –
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has confirmed this Monday at a press conference following a meeting of the Allies, the suspension of the training mission of the Iraqi security forces on the ground due to the escalation of tension after the death of the Iranian general Qasem Soleimani in an American attack.
“The allies have shown their strong support for the fight against the Islamic State and the NATO mission in Iraq. In everything we do, personnel security is paramount, so we suspend training on the ground,” explained the Secretary General. NATO, after an urgent meeting of the ambassadors before the North Atlantic Council.
In any case, Stoltenberg has decoupled this decision from the request of the Iraqi Parliament to leave the country's foreign troops, ensuring that the NATO mission has the “invitation” of the Baghdad Executive.
“The best weapon we have to fight terrorism is to train local forces. We are there at the invitation of the authorities. We suspend the activity now, but we will be ready to resume the activity whenever possible,” he added.
Stoltenberg has made it clear that he will follow the situation closely and will be in contact with the Iraqi government, to resume the mission whenever possible, claiming that it is good “for Iraq and for NATO.”
The current mission began in 2018 with the objective of training the Iraqi armed forces to prevent the resurgence of the Islamic State terrorist group.
ACCUSES IRAN OF THE CLIMB
On the latest events in the Middle East, Stoltenberg has accused Iran of the “escalation” of violence in the region and has called for containment. “The allies have called for containment and de-escalation. A new conflict does not interest anyone, so Iran must stop violence and provocations,” he said at a press conference.
“All the allies have shown their concern about the destabilizing activities of Iran in the region,” he said, condemning the support of the Ayatollah regime to armed groups in the area.
In addition, he explained that at the meeting on Monday the US delegation has informed the rest of the allies of the situation in the region “with attacks on the coalition” and the “bombing of Soleimani.”
Although it has avoided giving details about the explanation of the US delegation, it has wanted to thank and appreciate its exposure to the allies, by the Pentagon and the US Department of State.
“This shows that NATO is a platform where European and North American allies come together and address joint security issues,” he said.
THE ATTACK AGAINST SOLEIMANI WAS FROM THE US, NOT FROM NATO
When asked about his personal opinion about the bombing last Friday of the United States in Baghdad in which the relevant Iranian general died, Stoltenberg has preferred not to value it.
“It was a decision of the United States, not of the coalition or of NATO, but all the allies are concerned about the destabilizing activities in the region and the attacks on coalition bases in Iraq or against energy infrastructure in Saudi Arabia,” he said. settled.