Trump Signing MAGA Hats in Iraq May Have Violated Defense Department Rule

Donald Trump visits US troops in Iraq for first trip to a conflict zone

Donald Trump visits US troops in Iraq for first trip to a conflict zone

He said the United States could use Iraq as a regional launching pad to carry out operations against the ISIS and Syria. So was his national security adviser, John Bolton.

Similarly, the Bina parliamentary bloc denounced Trump's trip to Iraq, saying, it was "a flagrant and clear violation of diplomatic norms and shows his disdain and hostility in his dealings with the Iraqi government".

He also used the visits to build productive relationships with Iraqi senior officials, including then-Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

USA troops are stationed in Iraq as part of the coalition against the Islamic State group.

Iraqi lawmakers told Reuters that the pair had disagreed over where their planned meeting should take place: Trump had asked to meet at the Ain al-Asad military base, an offer which Abdul Mahdi declined.

During the call, Trump invited Abdel Mahdi to visit Washington and he accepted, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said.

President Bush and al-Maliki held regular conversations about the progress of the surge that increased USA troop strength in Iraq, effectively driving a wedge between Al Qaida and Sunni tribes.

Qais Khazali, the head of the Iran-backed Asaib Ahl al-Haq militia that fought key battles against IS in north Iraq, promised on Twitter that Parliament would vote to expel US forces from Iraq, or the militias would force them out by "other means".

The Kata'ib Hezbollah group also stressed that the resistance front would make the U.S. withdraw its forces from Iraq, adding that the fact that Trump made a surprise trip meant that "he does not feel safe announcing his visit to Iraq".

At the base, Trump sought to defend his "America first" policy of pulling back from multinational alliances.

Mr Trump walked along a rope line at the U.S. base in German state Rhineland-Palatinate, shaking hands, posing for selfies, and autographing "Make America Great Again" hats for servicemen.

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"I've been talking about it for a year and a half".

He spent a little more than three hours at a joint USA and Iraqi air base to the west of Baghdad along with his wife Melania. "Frankly, it's ridiculous", Trump added. No other top officials or members of Congress were along. "First time in 10 years". So I wanted to let you know. On December 19, the USA leader announced his decision to start pulling out American troops from Syria, stressing that the Islamic State terror group (outlawed in Russia) had been defeated and this was the only reason why the U.S. forces had remained there under his presidency.

Mr Trump wants $5billion (£3.95bn) in funding for the wall but the Democrats have said no.

The formation of Iraq's government has stalled as well, amid intensifying discord between the Islah and Bina blocs.

On Wednesday, Trump spent a few hours at al-Asad Air Base in Iraq's western Anbar Province but did not visit Baghdad.

Not that IS militants have been defeated in their last urban bastions, Iraqi politicians and militia leaders are speaking out against the continued presence of U.S. forces on Iraqi soil. Sadr has long opposed the American presence in Iraq since the US-led invasion toppled Saddam Hussein in 2003.

He also met Air Force generals aboard his aircraft at the base. "Our presence in Syria was not open-ended and was never meant to be permanent".

According to Trump, the flight into Iraq was unlike anything he had previously experienced.

According to a transcript released by the White House, he thanked troops for the "near-elimination" of IS and said "we'll be watching... very, very closely - the remnants" of the group.

It was his first visit to USA forces overseas and comes in the wake of Trump's decision to withdraw from Syria.

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