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Iraqi Prime Minister Pledges To Refrain From Regional Conflicts

Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi
Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi

Iraq won't take part in any regional or international conflicts, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi pledged on February 11.

The comment came after Abadi spoke by telephone with U.S. President Donald Trump.

"Iraq is very keen to preserve its national interests and does not wish to be part of any regional or international conflict which would lead to disasters for the region and for Iraq," Abadi told state TV.

The White House on February 10 said Trump and Abadi "spoke about the threat Iran presents across the entire region," in their first phone call since the inauguration of the U.S. president.

Abadi's office on February 10 also gave a readout of the phone call that took place overnight on February 9, without specifically mentioning Iran.

The readout said Abadi had asked Trump to remove his country from a travel ban list.

"The prime minister stressed the importance of a review of the decision on the right of Iraqis to travel to the United States," Abadi's office said.

Iraq is one of seven Muslim-majority countries whose citizens are barred from entering the United States for 90 days under an executive order Trump signed last month.

The ban was suspended by a lower court a week later and a federal appeals court on February 9 refused to reinstate it, but Trump has vowed to either continue the legal battle for his order to stand or to draft a new order.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP

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