Contrary to recent reports that the US had granted a waiver to Iraq to allow it to continue buying power from Iran, a State Department spokeswoman reportedly said on Wednesday that this was not the case.
Reuters quotes Morgan Ortagus as telling reporters that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has not made a decision on this issue.
By Mustafa Saadoun for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.
US grants Iraq reprieve to continue buying Iranian gas
The United States has decided to grant Iraq a third 90-day sanctions waiver so it can continue to purchase gas from its sole provider, Iran, giving Baghdad some much-needed breathing room.
On May 22 in Baghdad, Joey Hood, US chargé d’affaires in Iraq, stressed to reporters that the waivers will not continue indefinitely, so the United States is working with Iraq to reduce its dependence on Iran.
By Isadora Gotts for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.
PMU economic offices undermine fragile stability in Mosul
Escalating tensions between the United States and Iran are spilling over into Iraq as the United States orders the evacuation of all non-emergency government personnel following Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s unexpected visit to the country.
Some of the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), like Harakat Hezbollah al-Nujaba and Asaib Ahl al-Haq, are spreading their influence into Iraqi politics and the Iraqi economy, in addition to their influence in the military and security sectors — occasionally threatening to attack US troops in Iraq.
By Joe Macaron for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.
Will the Trump administration abort Iran’s land bridge to the Mediterranean?
As the showdown between Washington and Tehran escalates elsewhere in the Gulf, Iran is giving high priority to an effort to secure, control and reopen the al-Bukamal border crossing at Qaim, the only Syrian-Iraqi border crossing under Iranian control, to solidify its influence in the Levant and mitigate the impact of US sanctions.
It remains to be seen, however, whether Iran will pull off this move and how the Donald Trump administration might react.
By Adnan Abu Zeed for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.
Iraqi factions a wild card in US-Iran blame game
It’s hard to tell what’s really on the minds of Iranian and US officials in the flurry of words they’ve exchanged this week, but Baghdad has been perfectly clear about any potential confrontation between the two: not in my backyard.
Amid prolonged dares and double-dares between Tehran and Washington — punctuated with claims from both sides that they don’t want a war — Iraq has made it known it won’t become a proxy battleground.
The U.S. Senate has confirmed the nomination of Ambassador Matthew Tueller to be the Ambassador to Iraq.
Tueller has most recently served as U.S. Ambassador to Yemen.
A native of Utah, Utah, his other overseas assignments have included Ambassador to Kuwait, Deputy Chief of Mission at Embassy Cairo; Political Minister Counselor at Embassy Baghdad; Deputy Chief of Mission at Embassy Kuwait; Political Counselor at Embassy Riyadh; Chief of the U.S. Office in Aden, Yemen; Deputy Chief of Mission at Embassy Doha; Political Officer at Embassy London; and Political Officer and Consular Officer at Embassy Amman.
His Washington assignments have included Deputy Director in the Office of Northern Gulf Affairs and Egypt Desk Officer.