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Kerry: U.S. Will Consider More Iraq Military Aid, But Not Yet

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SYDNEY - The United States will consider additional military, economic and political assistance to Iraq once a new inclusive government is formed, Secretary of State John Kerry said on Tuesday. He urged Iraq's new Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to quickly form a new government, saying Iraqi leaders need to regain the confidence of its citizens by taking steps to demonstrate its resolve.

Kerry's comments in Sydney follow a statement from President Barack Obama that Iraq had taken "a promising step forward" in designating Abadi as its new prime minister. "We are prepared to consider additional political, economic and security options as Iraq's government starts to build a new government," Kerry told a news conference together with Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel and their Australian counterparts. Hagel said the United States was prepared to consider further military support in Iraq. Kerry ruled out U.S. combat troops on the ground. "We would wait and see what future requests this new government will ask of us and we will consider it based on those requests," Hagel said.

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- Reuters