Maliki Rejects Calls to Form ‘National Salvation Government’ in Iraq

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has rejected calls from the United States and other countries to form an emergency government. In a televised address, Maliki said calls to form “a national salvation government” represented a “coup against the constitution and the political process.” Maliki’s bloc won parliamentary elections held in April and he said he is committed to forming a new government based on those results by July 1. Meanwhile, about 130 of the special forces and military advisors the United States said it would deploy to Iraq have arrived in Baghdad to aid Iraqi troops in fighting Sunni militants. According to Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby, another four teams of military experts would arrive in the capital in the coming days for what he said would be “a limited, short-term mission.” On Wednesday, militants took control of multiple small oilfields and attacked and surrounded one of Iraq’s largest airbases, north of Baghdad.