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VP Biden reiterates support for new Iraqi government, despite concerns of Maliki blowback

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden conveyed the Obama administration's congratulations to Iraq's new leadership on Monday, commending President Fouad Massoum for moving forward with government formation and appointing Haidar al-Abadi as the new prime minister.
By JC Finley   |   Aug. 11, 2014 at 2:44 PM   |   Comments

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WASHINGTON, Aug. 11 (UPI) -- U.S. Vice President Joe Biden reiterated America's support for the new government of Iraq on Monday.

Following Iraqi President Fouad Massoum's nomination of Haidar al-Abadi as the new prime minister, Biden telephoned both leaders.

"The Vice President commended Massoum for meeting this key milestone and reiterated President Obama's repeated calls for the timely creation of a new, more inclusive government that will be able to address the legitimate concerns of all Iraqis," the White House said Monday.

Massoum's nomination of Abadi angered incumbent Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki who had hoped to retain the position, igniting concerns of a potential coup.

Biden congratulated Prime Minister-designate Abadi by phone on Monday on his appointment, and the two leaders discussed implementation of the bilateral Strategic Framework Agreement. The White House noted that Abadi, who is allotted 30 days to form a unity government under the Iraqi constitution, told Biden that he intends "to move expeditiously to form a broad-based, inclusive government capable of countering the threat of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, and building a better future for Iraqis from all communities."

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