Source: Press TV
A member of Iraq's State of Law coalition says that the presence of US forces in Iraq has been the main source of instability in the country.
“The Americans are the cause of instability in Iraq,” Saad al-Mutallebi told Press TV on Tuesday.
He added, “The general public in Iraq expects the US forces to leave the country by December 31.”
“The government is obliged to obey the SOFA agreement,” al-Mutallebi said, adding, “The agreement cannot be altered in any way.”
Under the US-Iraq Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), the US is mandated to withdraw its 50,000-strong force from Iraq by December 31, 2011.
The agreement also forced Washington to end its combat operations in Iraq in August 2010.
However, there have been numerous reports of US troops' involvement in military operations in Iraq.
Al-Mutallebi referred to the “internal security problem” and the “terrorist problem” as the major setbacks for the country and called for the expansion of the capabilities of Iraq's security and intelligence forces.
He said that Iraq has an “excellent relationship” with all its neighboring countries and denounced the US plot to convince Baghdad that they pose threats to Iraq's stability.
US officials are now pressing Baghdad to allow an extension of the US military presence.
However, according to Iraqi officials, local security forces are now completely capable of maintaining stability in the country.