Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Friday, July 28th, 2017

Hollande in Iraq for Meetings with Iraqi Leaders, French Forces

Hollande in Iraq for Meetings with Iraqi Leaders, French Forces

BAGHDAD - French President Francois Hollande arrived in Baghdad on Monday to meet with French forces in Iraq and to hold talks with Iraqi leaders over the fight against the Islamic State (IS) militant group, Iraqi official television reported.
Hollande is expected to meet with Iraqi President Fuad Masoum, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and other top Iraqi officials to discuss the fight against the IS, the state-run Iraqiya channel said.
Hollande, who is travelling with Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, is also expected to visit Arbil, the capital of semi- autonomous region of Kurdistan, and meet with Kurdish leader Masoud Barzani.
He will visit French troops taking part in the anti-IS offensive in northern Iraq.
France has around 500 troops fighting alongside forces of a U.S.-led coalition, the second largest contributor to the international coalition that has carried out thousands of air strikes against the IS in Iraq and Syria, and provided military equipment, training to Iraqi forces.
Hollande's visit to Iraq is his second as French president. He last visited to the country in September 2014.
His latest visit came amid a major offensive by Iraqi security forces, backed by an international coalition, to root out IS militants from its last major stronghold in and around Mosul. (Xinhua)