Donald Trump said that the United States will not leave Iraq unless it is paid back for a US air base it built there.
Washington DC: United States President Donald Trump on January 5 threatened to impose harsh sanctions on Iraq -- its ally -- if American troops are forced to leave the country.
"If they do ask us to leave, we don't do it in a very friendly basis," Trump told reporters here, as cited by the Hill.
"We will charge them sanctions like they've never seen before ever. It'll make Iranian sanctions look somewhat tame... If there's any hostility, that they do anything we think is inappropriate, we are going to put sanctions on Iraq, very big sanctions on Iraq," he added.
Trump's statement came in response to a question on the Iraqi Parliament voting in favour of a resolution calling on the country's government to work towards removing foreign troops’ presence there in the aftermath of a US airstrike near Baghdad international airport which killed top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani.
Trump said that the American forces would not leave Iraq unless the country pays billions of dollars which were put in the construction of an "extraordinarily expensive airbase".
"We have a very extraordinarily expensive airbase that's there. It cost billions of dollars to build. Long before my time," Trump said.
Last Updated 6, Jan 2020, 10:52 AM