Iraqi Leaders: No Need for US Troop Immunity After December

Officials Say Trainers Can Stay, But Nothing Else

In a move that will likely complicate Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s efforts to settle on keeping US troops in the nation beyond December, a new statement was issued today by Iraq’s political leadership rejecting blanket immunity for US troops in the nation.

The statement agreed on the notion of keeping US “trainers” in the country, something Maliki has been fighting for, but insisted that since all the training was supposed to happen on Iraqi military bases there was no need to give them immunity for actions off base.

This would be fine as far as actual training actions go, but much as the Obama Administration redefined all the troops as “non-combat” in August of 2010 while continuing combat missions, it was believed that they would just redefine all the troops as “trainers” but continue to use them for military offensives.

This rejection from Iraq’s political leaders might spur more discussion with neighboring Kuwait, as the Obama Administration is reportedly keen on the idea of “pre-positioning” combat troops in Kuwait to launch attacks on Iraq in the future.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.