WASHINGTON, June 5 (UPI) -- Ryan Crocker, U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Thursday denied published reports about secret plans involving permanent U.S. military bases in Iraq.
Negotiations with Iraq regarding its security and sovereignty "will be a transparent process," Crocker said during a news conference in Washington.
The report, published in the British newspaper The Independent, said sovereignty talks included U.S. secret plans to build 50 permanent military bases, control Iraqi airspace and legal immunity for U.S. soldiers and contractors.
"The Iraqi system requires that the agreement go before their Council of Representatives," Crocker said. "It will have a full debate. It will all be out there in the open."
Crocker called the report an "injuring myth."
"Again, it's a negotiation in progress, so I can't tell you what it's going to look like at the end, but I can tell you that we are not seeking permanent military bases" or control of Iraqi airspace, Crocker said. "That is just flatly untrue."
The ambassador said the ultimate document "isn't going to be an agreement that infringes on Iraq's sovereignty. The Iraqis are not going to accept it, and frankly, we wouldn't want it.