News / Middle East

Kerry: US Open to Cooperation with Iran to Help Iraq

Kerry: US Open to Cooperation With Iran to Help Iraqi
X
Zlatica Hoke
June 17, 2014 10:37 AM
The Pentagon has downplayed speculation about U.S. and Iranian military cooperation in Iraq, hours after Secretary of State John Kerry made the suggestion in an interview. Iran, which is controlled by Shi'ite Muslims, has been alarmed by the Sunni advance not too far from its border with Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports there are fears that involving Iran would lead to even more violence in Iraq.
Zlatica Hoke
The Pentagon has downplayed speculation about U.S. and Iranian military cooperation in Iraq, hours after Secretary of State John Kerry made the suggestion in an interview. Iran, which is controlled by Shi'ite Muslims, has been alarmed by the Sunni advance not too far from its border with Iraq. Some fear that the involvement of Iran would lead to even more violence in Iraq.
 
Militants of the extremist group the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) have taken control of several northern Iraqi cities and are moving toward the capital.
 
Kerry said in an interview with Yahoo Monday that President Barack Obama is considering air strikes to help the Iraqi government.  He said the president will not allow insurgents to split the country. 
 
"I do not believe the president is going to just sit by and let this take place," said Kerry.
 
The United States has moved four warships into the Persian Gulf, including an aircraft carrier with fighter jets and missiles.
 
Kerry said various ways of helping Iraq are being considered, including the use of drones and possible cooperation with Tehran.  Obama has ruled out sending troops to Iraq.
 
"We are open to any constructive process that could minimize the violence,” said Kerry. 
 
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has said Tehran would cooperate with the United States on restoring security to Iraq, within the framework of international law.
 
But some U.S. politicians and analysts say involving Iran would only lead to more violence in Iraq. The two neighbors have a history of strained relations and fought a war in the 1980s. Tehran has undermined the U.S. mission of building a democratic Iraq governed by both Shia and Sunni Muslims, said David Schenker, an analyst at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
 
"Now we're asking them to play a productive role? This is a regime that doesn't want anything other than a dominant Shiite Iraq. And frankly, if that's what they want, they're going to foment an even larger, more bloody civil war in Iraq," said Schenker.
 
Thousands of people have fled the fighting in northern Iraqi cities.  At a refugee camp in Kalak, Abu Qanea said he won't go back to his hometown of Mosul until he believes it's safe.
 
"We won't return until the situation improves and becomes safe.  Once the fighters leave and the Iraqi military secures the city, the situation will improve,” said Qanea. 
 
The swift advance of the al-Qaida-linked group in northern Iraq is threatening long-established borders in the region and raising alarm in Washington and in the neighboring countries.  The United States withdrew its troops from Iraq at the end of 2011 after an almost decade-long war.

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Obesity Poses Complex Problem

Professor warns of obesity’s worldwide health impact More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: dr asghar from: quetta
June 17, 2014 7:38 AM
Time to act against insurgents before things get out of control

by: MUSTAFA from: INDIA
June 17, 2014 6:13 AM
USA & Iran should cooperate each other to eliminate Al Qaida from Iraq completely. Al Qaida is Terrorist group well supported by Saudi Arabia. Al Qaida played a very very dirty game with innocent and helpless Syrians. They killed Syrians in brute way and rape Syrian Girls with Fatwa from Saudi regime. They are bad name on the face of Islam. Islam never ever teaches us to kill poor peoples and rape girls.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs