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Antony Blinken Makes Secret Visit to Iraq to Discuss Israel-Palestine Conflict

Antony Blinken’s unexpected visits to Iraq involve discussions on security, diplomacy, and engagements with Middle Eastern leaders.

Alexandros Michailidis/Shutterstock

Secretary of State Antony Blinken made a surprise visit to Iraq on Sunday. He marked it as an essential part of his fast-paced regional journey.

Blinken had a long talk with Iraqi PM al-Sudani in Baghdad, lasting more than an hour. 

He visited the US Embassy. He received a detailed security briefing. The briefing was about the ongoing danger to US buildings in the region.

US officials have clearly and extensively warned against any external parties getting involved in the Israel-Hamas conflict. 

US mission in Iraq and diplomatic efforts

After Hamas attacked, Iran-backed groups have stepped up attacks on US soldiers in Iraq and Syria.

Over the past month, the US stopped three drones in Iraq that were trying to attack US troops. Each of these was poised to harm American forces. One such assault led to minor harm to the coalition troops.

Assaults on American troops in Iraq have now become infrequent. This is because the United States has changed its mission. They are no longer focused on fighting but on helping and advising the Iraqi military.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken described his encounter with the prime minister as positive and fruitful. In the meeting, he made it clear that the US does not accept attacks on its personnel by Iranian-backed militias.

He emphasized that the U.S. will continue to protect its people and military bases by taking necessary actions.

Blinken and Al-Sudani on same moto

Blinken said the US and Iraq both want to stop attacks by Iranian-backed militias. 

He commended Prime Minister al-Sudani for his significant declaration, in which he condemned these attacks against US personnel.

Antony Blinken said that Prime Minister al-Sudani is working with security forces to prevent attacks. Blinken discussed this commitment.

During his visit to Iraq, both leaders discussed containing the Gaza conflict and preventing it from affecting the broader region during their discussion. 

Matthew Miller emphasis

State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller mentioned that they emphasized the United States’ dedication to collaborating with Iraq and its Middle Eastern allies to make sure that humanitarian assistance is readily available.  

Additionally, they emphasized the importance of safeguarding Palestinians in Gaza and preventing their relocation against their will.

Antony Blinken meeting with Palestinian President

Secretary Antony Blinken spoke with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah. They discussed the increasing Israeli settler violence in the West Bank. This conversation took place before Secretary Blinken’s visit to Iraq. 

As part of his regional tour, Blinken made stops in Israel, Jordan, and Cyprus. Following his visit to Iraq, he is slated to travel to Turkey.

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