Iraqi PM meets with US Congress delegation

Iraqi PM Adil Abdul Mahdi gives a televised speech in Baghdad, Iraq October 9, 2019. (File photo: Reuters)

Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi met on Sunday with a delegation from the US Congress, headed by Chair of the House Armed Services Committee Adam Smith.

During the meeting in Baghdad, the visiting delegation expressed their support for the efforts made by the Iraqi government to respond to the legitimate demands of the Iraqi people.

Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi stressed he is keen to enhance the relations between Iraq and the US and with its Arab and regional neighbors.

Iraqi Minister of Defense, National Security Adviser, Deputy Chairman of the Parliamentary Security and Defense Committee, and a number of officials and advisers attended the meeting.

On Friday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urged Iraq’s government to listen to the “legitimate demands” from a month of protests and to conduct a more credible probe into its crackdown.

“The government of Iraq should listen to the legitimate demands made by the Iraqi people who have taken to the streets to have their voices heard,” Pompeo said.

The meeting came amid widespread protests across Iraq, with protesters demanding sweeping change to the political system established after the 2003 US-led invasion, which they blame for widespread corruption, high unemployment, and poor public services.

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