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NATO agrees to train Iraqi forces in pre-summit breakthrough

NATO nations agreed to train Iraq’s new army, two days before a summit of the military alliance which risked being overshadowed by new transatlantic tension over Iraq. None of the alliance’s 26 member states had objected to an accord hammered out by NATO ambassadors late on Friday by a deadline of Saturday afternoon, diplomats said. “NATO heads of state and government are expected to approve this agreement at their summit meeting in Istanbul on June 28,” NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said in a statement. The NATO nations were united “in their full support for the independence, sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity” of Iraq and for strengthening its security, democracy and human rights, he added. Monday’s formal green light from NATO leaders would come just before the US-led coalition hands over sovereignty to Iyad Allawi’s interim Iraqi government on Wednesday. Full Story

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