USA's Pompeo warns of 'imminent' Iran threat on surprise trip to Iraq
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Iraq has promised to guarantee the safety of US interests from Iran, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Tuesday as he paid a surprise trip to Baghdad where he accused Tehran of planning "imminent" attacks. The top US diplomat's unannounced visit marked an effort to stand up Washington's ties with Baghdad as it pushes ahead with its "maximum pressure" against Tehran -- a US arch-rival, but an ally of Iraq. Pompeo abruptly cancelled talks in Germany and made a lengthy detour from a European tour to spend four hours in Iraq, where he met both President Barham Saleh and Prime Minister Adel Abdel Mahdi. "We talked to them about the importance of Iraq ensuring that it's able to adequately protect Americans in their country," Pompeo told reporters after the meetings. Pompeo said he made the trip because Iranian forces are "escalating their activity" and said the threat of attacks were "very specific".