- Associated Press - Friday, August 16, 2013

WASHINGTON — Iraq’s top diplomat says lethal U.S. drones could be based in Iraq to help fight a growing threat by al Qaeda.

The Iraqi foreign minister is Hoshyar Zebari.

Zebari said Friday that Iraqi forces need U.S. help with surveillance and analyzing intelligence. He suggests that an unspecified but limited number of American counterterror advisers could be stationed in Iraq to help its military deter a recent spike in deadly attacks.

His comments come 20 months after the U.S. military left Iraq because the two countries could not agree to keep some American troops there to bolster security.

Asked for specifics, Zebari said drones could be part of a U.S. package of support for Iraq.

Spokesmen at the Pentagon and State Department did not immediately respond to requests for comment.


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