Iraqi President: No Decision to Host Permanent US Military Bases

Iraqi President Fuad Masum says no decision has been made for Iraq to host permanent American military bases, stressing that Baghdad will not allow for the country to turn into a launch pad for any military aggression against neighboring Iran.

In an interview with Iranian Arabic-language al-Alam news network, Masum said there are “various allegations and analyses” with regards to reported US plans to build permanent military bases in Iraq.

However, “in actuality, Iraqi security bodies have announced that there is no such thing or decision,” he added.

“If they had begun building such bases, everyone would have known about it. Why should there be such bases [at all]? Is Iraq going to come under occupation in the future? Is anybody going to take military action against Iraq? We should defend Iraq ourselves,” Masum added.

The remarks echoed those by Foreign Minister Ebrahim Ja’afari, who said in March that his country would under no circumstances permit the United States to build permanent military bases on its soil, calling the prospect a violation of its sovereignty.

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