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Iraq deputy PM says Iraqis still need US | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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BAGHDAD (AP) – Iraq’s deputy prime minister says Iraqis still need the U.S. military and time is running out for approving a security agreement with the United States.

Deputy Prime Minister Barham Saleh warns that Iraq will enter a “period of a legal vacuum” if the U.N. mandate under which US troops operate in Iraq expires by year’s end without the agreement having been approved.

Saleh, who is Kurdish, says the pact is essential to preserve “the security improvement which has been achieved.” He spoke to reporters Saturday.

U.S. and Iraqis officials have been working to finalize a deal that would remove U.S. troops from Iraq’s cities by June 30 and withdraw them from the country by 2012.