U.S. and Iraqi negotiators are "very close" to reaching a long-term security deal that will decide the fate of American forces in Iraq, the foreign minister said Sunday. Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari said the Iraqis were insisting on the inclusion of a "very clear timeline" for the pullout of U.S.-led forces.
The main sticking points have been over the authorization of U.S. military operations, immunity for American soldiers and sovereignty issues, Zebari said, adding that both sides "are compromising on all these issues."
In remarks to reporters, Zebari said that talks were "on the brink" of agreement. "They have achieved substantial progress," he said, according to the AP. "We are very close to reaching a final agreement."
Zebari said he hoped an agreement could be ready to present to Iraqi lawmakers for approval "when the parliament convenes ... hopefully in early September."