Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on Saturday insisted that only Iraqi forces would take part in the campaign to recapture the northern city of Mosul from Islamic State, despite the U.S. hinting that it was sympathetic to Turkey's demand to be involved.
While meeting with Carter, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said the assault on Kirkuk was a terrorist attack and not a military breach.
More than 25,000 Iraqi ground forces and e thUS -led coalition aircraft and advisers are involved in the Mosul offensive, which is expected to take weeks, if not months.
Iraqi forces - backed by the USA military - are trying to retake the city from ISIS. In 2014, when IS swept through the region, Hamdaniyah's residents fled the town, about 20 kilometers (13 miles) southeast of Mosul, to seek sanctuary in Kurdish areas.
The offensive on Mosul is expected to become the biggest battle fought in Iraq since the US -led invasion in 2003 and it could require a massive humanitarian relief operation.
USA forces at Iraq's Qayyara West airfield put on protective masks after winds blew fumes from the chemical plant in their direction, USA military officials said.
Mr. Carter meanwhile indicated his conditional backing for a possible Turkish role in the campaign, pointing out that there was an agreement in principle that could allow for eventual Turkish participation.
By Saturday, a US military official said the Iraqi special forces were working to clear out Bartella.
The Iraqi army's 9th Division has launched a new push to retake a town near Mosul from the Islamic State group.
Iraqi Kurdish leader Massud Barzani (left) welcomes US Secretary of Defence Ashton Carter in Arbil, the capital of the Kurdish autonomous region in northern Iraq.
An emergency hospital south of the Iraqi city of Mosul has treated some 250 people for breathing difficulties linked to a sulfur plant that was torched by the Islamic State group.
The U.S. service member killed this week was the fourth U.S. combat death in Iraq since the U.S. began military operations against IS in August 2014.
Government and Kurdish forces were carrying out a mop-up operation in several neighborhoods in search for Islamic State fighters who might have been injured during the clashes, a security source said earlier.
"It's pretty significant, we are talking about enemy indirect fire, multiple IEDs (improvised explosive devices), multiple VBIED (vehicle-borne IEDs) each day, even some anti-tank guided missiles, so it's been very tough fighting, snipers, machine guns", he said.
The U.S. estimates there are between 3,000 and 5,000 IS fighters in the Mosul area, but some leaders probably have fled.
Just a few days earlier, on October 21, Iraqi security forces repelled a major attack by IS militants on the oil-producing city of Kirkuk but at least 80 people, mainly security forces were killed. Turkey has refused, insisting that it play a role in retaking Mosul from IS.
Bashiqa is close to a military base where some 500 Turkish troops are training Sunni and Kurdish fighters for the Mosul offensive.