News / Middle East

    Kerry: US 'Open to Discussions' With Iran on Iraq Fighting

    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry delivers opening remarks at the "Our Ocean" conference at the State Department in Washington, June 16, 2014.
    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry delivers opening remarks at the "Our Ocean" conference at the State Department in Washington, June 16, 2014.
    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says the Obama administration may be willing to work with Iran militarily against al-Qaida-affiliated Sunni militants who are moving rapidly through northern Iraq.  Kerry calls the advance by Syrian-based fighters an "existential" danger to Iraq.

    Kerry commented Monday during an interview with Katie Couric, Yahoo News' global anchor.  

    He said the United States is "open to any constructive process" that could minimize the violence in Iraq and hold the country together, including cooperation with Iran.

    "We're open to discussions if there is something constructive that can be contributed by Iran, if Iran is prepared to do something that is going to respect the integrity and sovereignty of Iraq and the ability of the government to reform," said Kerry.

    On whether the U.S. would cooperate militarily with Iran, Kerry said the need is to go "step by step... but I would not rule out anything that would be constructive to providing real stability, a respect for the constitution, a respect for the election process, and a respect for the ability of the Iraqi people to form a government that represents all of the interests of Iraq, not one sectarian group over another.  It has to be inclusive, and that has been one of the great problems of the last few years."

    However at the Pentagon, Rear Admiral John Kirby told reporters Monday that there was "absolutely no intention and no plan to coordinate military activities" with Iran with respect to the situation in Iraq. Kirby did not rule out possible discussions with Iran on the sidelines of the P5+1 talks.

    Images from Iraq
     
    • A member of the Iraqi Special Operations Forces stands guard during an intensive security deployment in Baghdad's Amiriya district, June 18, 2014.
    • Shi'ite volunteers who joined the Iraqi army to fight the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant gesture with their weapons in Baghdad, June 18, 2014.
    • A member of Iraqi security forces stands guard in front of volunteers who joined the army to fight the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, Baghdad, June 17, 2014.
    • Shi'ite tribal fighters raise their weapons and chant slogans against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in Basra, Iraq, June 16, 2014.
    • Mehdi Army fighters loyal to Shi'ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr march during military-style training in the holy city of Najaf, Iraq, June 16, 2014.
    • Iraqi army soldiers stand guard in Baghdad, June 16, 2014.
    • A volunteer who joined the Iraqi Army to fight the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant holds a weapon during a parade in Al-Fdhiliya district, eastern Baghdad, June 15, 2014.
    • A vehicle belonging to Kurdish security forces fires a multiple rocket launcher during clashes with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant on the outskirts of Diyala, Iraq, June 14, 2014.
    • This image posted on a militant website on June 14, 2014 appears to show militants from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant with captured Iraqi soldiers wearing plain clothes after taking over a base in Tikrit, Iraq.
    • This image posted on a militant website on June 14, 2014 appears to show militants from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant with captured Iraqi soldiers wearing plain clothes after taking over a base in Tikrit, Iraq.


    U.S. officials have criticized Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki for not doing more to include more Sunni and Kurdish leaders in the government in Baghdad.

    A senior State Department official said Sunday that Secretary Kerry spoke with his counterparts from Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates about combating fighters from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant.

    Kerry told Couric those militants are a challenge to the region and "clearly are focused not just there, but they’re focused on trying to do harm to Europe, to America and other people."

    Deputy U.S. Secretary of State Bill Burns is in Geneva for international talks on limiting Iran's nuclear program.  A senior State Department officials says Burns may have discussions with Iranian officials about Iraq but those would be "completely and separately" removed from nuclear negotiations.

    You May Like

    S. African Farmer Goes From 'Voice in the Wilderness' to Sought-After Expert

    Margarest Roberts has authored more than 40 books on subjects like organic farming, urban agriculture, herbs and ‘superfoods'

    Millennial Men Prefer Bucks Over Beauty

    U.S. men aged 18 to 34 say the finances of a potential significant other are more important than her looks

    Multimedia Lebanese Clown Troupe Marks Valentine's Day Amid Stink

    Activists resort to unusual approaches to raise public awareness of country’s ongoing trash crisis

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Foowy from: usa
    June 16, 2014 10:58 PM
    As Infowars.com has documented for more than a decade, the war on terror is in fact a contrived event designed to level nations through “creative destruction” and establish a high-tech surveillance police state at home.

    ISIS, as we have shown, was engineered by the CIA, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Turkey. It is based on a template used in Afghanistan to take down the Soviet Union, as the globalist operative Zbigniew Brzezinski has readily admitted. The Afghan Mujahideen became the Taliban and al-Qaeda and, over the last two years, al-Qaeda morphed into a more ominous and darkly menacing threat operating strategically in the Middle East, Asia and Africa.

    ISIS, al-Shabaab, al-Nusra, Boko Haram, etc., these are not coincidentally formed terror organizations. They are the shock troops of the New World Order.

    by: Anthonybellchambers from: London
    June 16, 2014 3:34 PM
    The potentially ground-breaking rapprochement between the United States and Iran, as partners for peace in their mutual desire to stabilise the the Iraqi democratic government, has consequently left Israel vulnerable and isolated.

    At a stroke, Netanyahu's influence in Washington has all but disappeared as he becomes a virtual irrelevance in a conflict that is infinitely more important to the international community than his illegal settlement policy that continues to violate international law. Similarly irrelevant is his failed strategy to persuade the US to attack Iran, the most stable state in the Middle East.

    The question that requires an answer is: what influence, if any, did the Israeli government have in persuading discredited former US president George W Bush to attack Saddam Hussein in 2003 - a move that has now given birth to the dangerous instability that threatens the entire region, its tens of millions of peoples and its essential oil supplies?

    And the second question is: for how much longer will the US congress continue to vote billions of American tax-dollars to a state that is alleged to have been complicit in the Bush-Blair coalition agreement that is known to have cost in excess of 100,000 Iraqi, American and British lives as it led its respective countries to war without a legitimate mandate?

    Finally, there is the question of whether that fateful decision to attack Iraq in 2003 constituted a war crime that should now be determined by the International Criminal Court with a formal indictment of the then political leaders concerned.
    _____________________________________________________

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growthi
    X
    February 10, 2016 5:54 AM
    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growth

    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Civil Rights Pioneer Remembers Struggle for Voting Rights

    February is Black History Month in the United States. The annual, month-long national observance pays tribute to important people and events that shaped the history of African Americans. VOA's Chris Simkins reports how one man fought against discrimination to help millions of blacks obtain the right to vote
    Video

    Video Jordanian Theater Group Stages Anti-Terrorism Message

    The lure of the self-styled “Islamic State” has many parents worried about their children who may be susceptible to the organization’s online propaganda. Dozens of Muslim communities in the Middle East are fighting back -- giving young adults alternatives to violence. One group in Jordan is using dramatic expression a send a family message. Mideast Broadcasting Network correspondent Haider Al Abdali shared this report with VOA. It’s narrated by Bronwyn Benito
    Video

    Video Migrant Crisis Fuels Debate Over Britain’s Future in EU

    The migrant crisis in Europe is fueling the debate in Britain ahead of a referendum on staying in the European Union that may be held this year. Prime Minister David Cameron warns that leaving the EU could lead to thousands more migrants arriving in the country. Meanwhile, tension is rising in Calais, France, where thousands of migrants are living in squalid camps. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clowns

    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Families Flee Aleppo for Kurdish Regions in Syria

    Not all who flee the fighting in Aleppo are trying to cross the border into Turkey. A VOA reporter caught up with several families heading for Kurdish-held areas of northern Syria.
    Video

    Video Rocky Year Ahead for Nigeria Amid Oil Price Crash

    The global fall in the price of oil has rattled the economies of many petroleum exporters, and Africa’s oil king Nigeria is no exception. As Chris Stein reports from Lagos, analysts are predicting a rough year ahead for the continent’s top producer of crude.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.