Obama, Maliki talk about Iraq economy
WASHINGTON, July 22 (UPI) -- Iraq's prime minister said he discussed continued U.S. cooperation in non-military matters during his White House meeting with President Barack Obama Wednesday.
Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki told reporters at a joint news conference that economic, commercial and educational issues were on the agenda and were important steps in getting Iraq into the mainstream of the international community.
He said a conference was being planned for the fall that would invite international investors seeking business opportunities in Iraq.
The United States is also taking steps to do away with United Nations sanctions established while Saddam Hussein was in power. President Obama said the so-called Chapter 7 sanctions were no longer necessary, but would require regional cooperation to be removed.
"I think that they're going to have to be some specific disputes that are resolved between Iraq and some of its neighbors," Obama said. "We intend to be very constructive in that process, but we have said clearly … that we will work diligently with Iraq so that in fact Iraq is no longer within chapter seven."
Obama also said the United States was still on target to have all of its troops out of Iraq in 2011 and predicted that attempts to re-ignite sectarian violence in the country would fail.