US officials are expressing concern about the refusal of at least five NATO countries to allow their instructor to participate in the alliance training program for Iraqi military officers.
State Department officials who asked not to be identified said Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg and Spain refuse to allow their officers at bases in Mons, Belgium and Norfolk (in the eastern US state of) Virginia to assist in the training.
All five governments strongly opposed the US-led war in Iraq.
Their refusal comes despite Wednesday's agreement of all 26 NATO members to approve plans and financing for the training mission.
The State Department officials noted that Wednesday's agreement is the first in which all 26 NATO members approved an alliance role in Iraq. Until then NATO had played only a limited role in Iraq, providing logistical support to Polish units.