US May Cooperate with Iran to Stop Sunni Extremists

Amanda Casanova | Contributor | Monday, June 16, 2014

US May Cooperate with Iran to Stop Sunni Extremists

The US and Iran could enter into a cooperation agreement to try to stop Sunni extremists in Iraq.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said Washington would not “rule out anything that would be constructive,” including a possible military cooperation with Iran.

Fighters in Iraq have advanced and captured several cities. On Monday, reports  surfaced that fighters had taken Tal Afar, a northern Iraqi city.

Kerry said in an interview with Katie Couric of Yahoo News that the US was "open to discussions" with Iran to help stop the violence that has spread in Iraq.

"We're open to discussions if there is something constructive that can be contributed by Iran, if Iran is prepared to do something that is going to respect the integrity and sovereignty of Iraq and ability of the government to reform," Kerry said.

But President Barack Obama said Friday that he wanted a commitment from Iraq prime minister Nouri al-Maliki for reforms.

Obama could launch air strikes against fighter in Iraq.

"They are not the whole answer, but they may well be one of the options that are important to be able to stem the tide and stop the movement of people who are moving around in open convoys and trucks and terrorizing people," Kerry said of air strikes in Iraq.

"When you have people murdering, assassinating … you have to stop that, and you do what you need to do – if you need to try to stop it from the air or otherwise."

Publication date: June 16, 2014