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NATO, Iraq signs cooperation accord

BRUSSELS, Sept 24 (KUNA) -- NATO on Monday night announced that it has signed a cooperation agreement with Iraq which will foster closer security ties and help Iraq build up its security institutions.
NATO Deputy Secretary General Alexander Vershbow and Iraqi National Security Adviser Faleh Faisal Al-Fayyadh signed the Individual Partnership and Cooperation Programme (IPCP) at NATO headquarters in Brussels.
The accord inaugurates a full-fledged partnership. The signing of the accord follows NATO's Training Mission in Iraq (NTM-I) which ended last December, noted a NATO statement.
The 28-member Alliance said it is committed to assisting Iraq as it builds a modern security sector which can cooperate with international partners.
It said that the partnership will promote dialogue and address shared threats. NATO and Iraq intend to work together to develop the capacity of Iraq's security institutions and to cultivate the expertise of its national defence academies.
The agreement also creates a framework for regular political dialogue and for training cooperation in areas such as counter-terrorism, crisis management, disaster relief and logistics.
The signing of the partnership accord marks the formal accession of Iraq to NATO's "partnerships family".
There are a number of global partners which develop cooperation with NATO in areas of mutual interest, including emerging security challenges, noted the statement.
Under the accords, individual global partners choose the areas where they wish to engage with NATO, as well as the extent of this cooperation. Australia, Japan, the South Korea, New Zealand, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Mongolia are also among NATO's global partners. (end) nk.bs KUNA 242225 Sep 12NNNN