Training mission in Iraq to end: NATO chief
Brussels: NATO will wrap up its training mission in Iraq by year-end, its secretary general, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, said Monday.
"Agreement on the extension of this successful programme did not prove possible despite robust negotiations conducted over several weeks," Xinhua quoted Rasmussen as saying.
Rasmussen said after the training mission, which started in 2004, NATO would continue to strengthen partnership and political relationship with Iraq through the existing framework.
NATO has trained over 15,000 Iraqi soldiers and police and provided over 115 million euros (over $150 million) worth of military equipment.
Iraq's National Security Adviser Falah al-Fayadh said Sunday that NATO was poised to end its training mission as Baghdad refused to grant it legal immunity from prosecution.
Earlier this year, Iraqi authorities also denied continuing grant of similar immunity to US soldiers in Iraq, which prompted the US decision to withdraw all troops from Iraq by end of 2011.