World News

France not planning to cut troop numbers in Iraq for now - government source

PARIS (Reuters) - France has no plans to cut its troop numbers from Iraq for the moment following the killing of a top Iranian military commander that has exacerbated tensions in the region, a French government source said on Tuesday.

Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly said on Twitter that given the events in Baghdad, France had already reinforced security for its 160 soldiers stationed in Iraq. She reiterated that Paris’ priority was the fight against Islamic State militants, who were re-merging in the area.

“In this context, France calls on Iran to not contribute to the escalation and return and fully comply with the (2015) nuclear accord,” she said.

France provides training and logistical support to Iraqi and Kurdish forces part of the anti-Islamic State coalition in the country.

Reporting by Tangi Salaun; writing by John Irish; editing by Leigh Thomas