Accessibility links

Kerry Says Iraq Briefed On U.S. Special Forces

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has said Baghdad was fully briefed on U.S. plans to deploy U.S. special forces to Iraq.

Kerry's comments in Brussels on the sidelines of a NATO meeting on December 2 come a day after U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced Washington would deploy a force of special operations troops to combat Islamic State militants.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi's office said Iraq's government would need to approve any deployment of special operations forces anywhere in Iraq.

He also said foreign ground combat troops were not needed in Iraq, although it was unclear whether Baghdad viewed these U.S. special operations forces in that role.

Kerry said the two governments would consult closely on where the U.S. special forces will go and what they will do.

"We will continue to work very, very closely with our Iraqi partners on exactly who would be deployed, where they would be deployed, what kinds of missions people would undertake, how they would support Iraqi efforts to degrade and destroy ISIL," Kerry said, referring to IS by one of its other names.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters