March 24, 2015 / 4:09 PM / 3 years ago

U.S. says would review any Iraqi request for help in Tikrit

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States would review any Iraqi request for assistance with its offensive to retake the city of Tikrit from Islamic State insurgents, the Pentagon said on Tuesday, describing the operation as “stalled.”

“Certainly, if the Iraqis formally request U.S. assistance, we would take a look at that,” Pentagon spokesman Colonel Steve Warren told a news briefing, declining to say whether Baghdad had already submitted such a request.

Reuters reported on Tuesday that Iraq’s request to the U.S.-led coalition for air strikes in the campaign to retake Tikrit from Islamic State insurgents was imminent.

If the coalition accepts such a request, it would see by far the biggest collaboration so far against the militants by Iraqi forces, the Iranian-backed paramilitary’s and their Iranian advisers on the ground, and the United States and its allies.

Reporting by Phil Stewart; Editing by Bill Trott

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