The US Embassy in Iraq has denied reports of a secret meeting between Iran's commander of Quds Force, Major General Qasem Soleimani, and American Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Defeat Daesh Brett McGurk, last Tuesday.
Through its official Twitter account, the US Embassy in Iraq denied the validity of the news and confirmed that such information is totally misleading.
The Embassy is aware of false media reports that Special Presidential Envoy Brett McGurk and an Iranian General met to discuss forming a new Iraqi government. The reports are fake news. No such meeting ever happened. – Charles Cole, U.S. Embassy Spokesman
— U.S. Embassy Baghdad (@USEmbBaghdad) September 15, 2018
US Embassy Spokesman Charles Cole said in a statement: "The US Embassy has noticed the circulation of wrong media reports about a meeting between special presidential envoy Brett McGurk and an Iranian general to discuss the formation of the new Iraqi government. Such news is baseless, and there has never been such a meeting."
Based on sources familiar with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, Al-Kuwaityah newspaper reported in its September 15 edition that the meeting held between Major General Qasem Soleimani and Brett McGurk followed an indirect mutual exchange of messages.
The source stated that "the meeting was at McGurk's request, as the American side assured the Iranians of having no involvement with the burning of the Iranian consulate in Basra during protests over drinking water shortages and the deterioration of services. The US also asked Iran to instruct its allies to avoid attacking US interests in Iraq, to avoid an escalation that could get out of control and result in grave retributions in the aftermath. "
The same source stated that McGurk stressed to Soleimani that both countries should put aside their differences and work together to endorse the formation of a new Iraqi government.
The newspaper's source explained that Washington does not insist on supporting a specific political personality to lead the next Iraqi government, including the current Prime Minister, Haider Al-Abadi. The US believes that the time has come to make room for new political figures to emerge and that Tehran should not adhere to its traditional allies who have been missing in the Iraqi street for many years.