Vice President Mike Pence spoke today with Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi of Iraq. The leaders discussed the Trump Administration’s deep commitment to protect persecuted Christians and other religious minorities in Iraq and the greater Middle East, a commitment which is shared by Prime Minister Abadi. They also discussed the upcoming May elections in Iraq, reports of Iran attempting to meddle in Iraq’s election and government formation, and the need to ensure free and fair elections that include Iraq’s citizens displaced by the fight against ISIS. Vice President Pence congratulated Prime Minister Abadi on Iraqi Security Force successes against ISIS and highlighted the continuing great partnership between Iraq’s Security Forces and the U.S. military and coalition partners. The Vice President was pleased to hear more about the re-opening of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region’s airports and the initial payment of some Kurdistan Regional Government salaries. Both leaders expressed looking forward to increased trade and economic ties between Iraq and the United States.