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White House Welcomes Iraqi Leader's Political Reforms

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden spoke with Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar Al-Abadi by phone on April 1 and applauded his move to replace political cronies in his cabinet with policy experts, the White House said.

"The vice president welcomed the Prime Minister's political reform efforts and reaffirmed continued U.S. support for steps, in concert with Iraqi political leaders, to strengthen transparency, national unity, and accountability," it said.

Biden also stressed "the critical importance of sustaining momentum" in the fight against the Islamic State group. The two leaders discussed U.S. efforts to support Iraqi security forces.

Biden also "commended" Abadi for "engaging constructively" with the International Monetary Fund "to address fiscal challenges and unlock access to international financial assistance."

With reporting by Reuters