Iraq Assures US of Protecting Intelligence From Russians, Iranians
Iraq has agreed to withhold intelligence information the United States shares with it from the Russians, Syrians and the Iranians, US anti-Islamic State coalition spokesperson Col. Steve Warren said during a press conference on Thursday.
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – 'The Iraqi Ministry of Defense has given us [United States] assurances that our information will be appropriately protected,' Warren said when asked whether the intelligence Washington shares with Baghdad would be protected from Russia, Iran and Syria.
Warren noted the intelligence is 'exceptionally good' and Washington has already expressed 'concerns' to the Iraqi Ministry of Defense about protecting it.
Warren's remarks come a day after Russia announced it would embark on an airstrikes campaign against the Islamic State in Syria at the request of President Bashar Assad.
Washington, however, has expressed grave concerns about Russia's anti-Islamic State contribution, but has said that the US would welcome Moscow's help in Syria against the terrorist group if the airstrike campaign was 'genuine' and not solely meant to help the Assad government.
Warren pointed out the intelligence sharing between the United States and Iraq has led to 'thousands' of Islamic State members being targeted on the battlefield.
A US-led coalition against the Islamic State, consisting of 62 nations, has been conducting airstrikes in Syria since September 2014, albeit without UN Security Council authorization or approval by the Syrian government.
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