Four US troops die; Iraqi PM in bid to avoid Turkey invasion
Roadside bombs killed four American troops in the Baghdad area, including three in a single strike, the military said Tuesday. Three soldiers were killed Saturday when a roadside bomb struck their convoy south of Baghdad, according to a brief statement, cited by the AP.
One soldier was killed and another wounded Monday when their vehicle was targeted by an armor-piercing explosively formed penetrator, or EFP, in a western section of the capital, the military said separately.
Meanwhile, Iraqi prime minister arrived for a visit in Turkey likely to be dominated by Turkish warnings to either crack down on Kurdish bases in northern Iraq or face a possible incursion. "Our visit is an effort to develop bilateral relations and cooperation with Turkey, especially regarding the security file, which is the most important one," he told The Associated Press in an interview on his plane before landing in Ankara.
Al-Maliki was greeted at the airport in Ankara by Turkey‘s Trade Minister Kursad Tuzmen. The Iraqi delegation included Oil Minister Hussain al-Shahristani, Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari and some Iraqi legislators. Al-Maliki will likely seek to dissuade Turkey from launching an incursion.
Turkey recently reinforced its troops on the Iraqi border, and the military said it was waiting for government approval to move in. Turkey‘s parliament must endorse any cross-border military offensive.