MOSCOW, September 10 (RIA Novosti) - United States Secretary of State John Kerry made an unannounced visit to Baghdad on Wednesday for talks with the new Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar Abadi.
"Wheels down in Baghdad, Iraq. Back again for 2nd time in 3 months - critical partner against ISIL [Islamic State] - inclusive government is a big step,” Kerry wrote via Twitter on Wednesday.
On Monday, the Iraqi parliament approved a new government headed by Prime Minister Haidar Abadi, a step Kerry declared a “major milestone.” Both defense and interior minister’s positions currently await assignment from the prime minister, who requested an additional week to name the ministers. The rest of the candidates put forward for the Cabinet have been approved.
The purpose of Kerry's visit to the Iraqi capital was to "discuss how the United States can increase its support to the new Iraqi government in our common effort to defeat ISIS and the threat that it poses to Iraq, the region, and the world," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki was quoted as saying by the news agency.
The visit was the second stop in the state secretary’s Middle Eastern tour aimed at gaining financial, political, and military support for operations against the Islamic State.
The United States alongside nine other countries across Europe and Canada and Australia agreed last week to create a united front against the ISIS jihadist group which has overrun much of northern Iraq and Syria declaring a caliphate over its conquered territories.
US President Barack Obama will give a televised speech on Wednesday outlining the United States' future commitments against ISIS.
The United States has already carried out some 150 airstrikes on IS targets after the terrorist group captured large swaths of the Iraq-Syria border regions.