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Remarks Prior to a Meeting With President Barham Salih of Iraq and an Exchange With Reporters in Davos, Switzerland

January 22, 2020

President Trump. Well, thank you very much. It's great to be with the President of Iraq, and we are obviously working on a lot of things together. We're working on military. We're working on ISIS. We're working on—we have a whole host of very difficult things to discuss and some very positive things also. And we've been friends, and the relationship is very good. And I just want to thank you very much, Mr. President. Please.

President Salih. Thank you, Mr. President. Thank you. It's an important opportunity to meet President Trump to talk about the developments in our neighborhood. These are challenging times, difficult times. And I look for a very fruitful and candid conversation with the President.

We have had an enduring relationship, and the United States has been a partner to Iraq and in the war against ISIS. This mission needs to be accomplished, and I believe you and I share the same mission for a stable, sovereign Iraq that is at peace with itself and at peace with its neighbors.

President Trump. Great. Thank you very much.

U.S. Military Presence in Iraq

Q. What is the plan for pulling out U.S. troops from Iraq?

President Trump. Well, we're talking about a lot of different things, and you'll be hearing whatever we do. But they like what we're doing, and we like them, and we've had a very good relationship. I can only speak for my administration; I won't speak for past administrations, frankly. But we've had a very good relationship.

And we're down to a very low number. We're down to 5,000. So we're down to a very low number, historically low. And we'll see what happens.

Iraq-U.S. Relations/Iraq's Petroleum Industry

Q. Mr. President, are you still considering sanctions against Iraq?

President Trump. We'll see what happens, because we do have to do things on our terms. Okay?

Q. Mr. Salih——

President Trump. We——

President Salih. We have a lot of common interests: the fight against extremism; stability in the neighborhood——

President Trump. That's right.

President Salih. ——a sovereign Iraq that is stable, friends of the neighbors, and friends of the United States.

President Trump. And we're also involved with them in their oil business, and that's always been very important from their standpoint and from our standpoint. So we have a lot of very positive things to talk about. But we are down to a low number, and we've been there for quite a while. So we'll make a determination.

Okay? Thank you all very much.

Q. President Salih, what was your reaction to the death of Qasem Soleimani?

President Trump. Thank you very much. Thank you. Thank you.

We're going to do a news conference today. We have one other meeting, and then we're going to be doing a news conference right after this.

President Trump's Schedule

Q. You're doing a news conference, Mr. President?

President Trump. So that will be, I would say, within the next 45 minutes. Yeah, before leaving. We're going to be leaving in a little while.

We've had tremendous success in Davos. And we'll be leaving in a little while, but we'll do a news conference—a quick news conference. And then, we head back. Some of you are coming on a very nice plane.

Okay? So I'll see you in a little while.

NOTE: The President spoke at 11:34 a.m. at the Davos Congress Centre. In his remarks, he referred to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) terrorist organization.

Donald J. Trump, Remarks Prior to a Meeting With President Barham Salih of Iraq and an Exchange With Reporters in Davos, Switzerland Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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