France commits more than $1B to help rebuild Iraq

Human Rights Watch

France’s foreign minister said Monday that the country will commit 1 billion euros, or $1.15 billion, to help rebuild Iraq in the wake of the campaign to defeat the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

The Associated Press reported that French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian met with his Iraqi counterpart in Baghdad, where the two discussed the rebuilding efforts. The French contribution will be used to assist some of the country’s most damaged areas.

Iraq’s Planning Ministry has estimated the total cost of reconstruction to be roughly $88 billion, the AP reported. In addition to France’s pledge, Iraq secured $30 billion at a donor conference last year.

{mosads}France is part of the international coalition of nations that has fought to root out ISIS in Iraq and Syria in recent years.

The U.S. is also part of that group, but appeared to catch allies off guard last month when President Trump abruptly announced plans to withdraw American forces from Syria.

While the president initially indicated troops would be “coming back now,” the administration has since put conditions on the U.S. withdrawal.

National security adviser John Bolton said the withdrawal is contingent on the total defeat of ISIS, and on assurances from Turkey that they will not attack the U.S.-backed Kurds.

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