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US Defense Secretary arrives in Baghdad on an unannounced visit

US Defense Secretary Mark Esper arrived in Baghdad on Wednesday for a secret visit.

A source told (Baghdad today) that “Esber arrived in the early hours of this morning to Baghdad an unannounced visit,” noting that “the US secretary is scheduled to discuss with his Iraqi counterpart to transfer his country’s troops from Syria and keep them in Iraq, in addition to the fight against ISIS. ”

The US secretary made a secret visit to Saudi Arabia on Monday (October 21, 2019) to discuss the two countries’ shared concerns as tensions with Iran escalate during a Middle East tour.

According to Saudi media, Esber held talks with King Salman bin Abdul Aziz and his crown prince.

US Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Sunday (October 20, 2019) that 1,000 troops withdrawn from Syria were expected to go to western Iraq.

He said, “The forces in western Iraq will focus on helping to defend Iraq, and the fight against” ISIS. “According to the agency” Reuters “.

“The ceasefire in northeastern Syria is generally coherent,” he said.

“It is expected that all the troops withdrawing from northern Syria, which number about a thousand troops to western Iraq, to continue the campaign against ISIS fighters and to help defend Iraq.”

“The US withdrawal is well underway in northeastern Syria,” Asper told reporters on his way to the Middle East. “We are talking about weeks, not days. The current plan is to relocate those forces in western Iraq.”

“There are about 1,000 people,” he said. Source