Iran and Iraq have pledged to join forces against militant fighters and ideology in the region by boosting bilateral defense ties, a move that could present a challenge to U.S. foreign policy goals. Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan and Iraqi Defense Minister Irfan al-Hiyali met Sunday in Tehran to sign a military agreement aimed at improving joint efforts to curb the influence of jihadis such as the Islamic State militant group. ISIS has conducted deadly attacks in both countries and is still being fought by Iraq with support from Iran and the U.S., but the U.S. has become increasingly concerned about Iran’s growing foothold in Iraq. Despite the volatile history of the two majority Shiite-Muslim neighbors and their differing views on Washington, the new deal will reportedly see Iran and Iraq’s armed forces work together on a number of strategic levels. Related: U.S. military must leave Iran’s borders and stop calling us terrorists, Revolutionary Guards say “Extending cooperation and exchanging experiences in fighting terrorism and extremism, border security, and educational, logistical, technical and military support are among the provisions of this memorandum,” Reuters quoted Iran’s state-run Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) as reporting. While the U.S. has yet to offer… Read full this story
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