Iraqi security forces are deployed in front of the US embassy, in Baghdad on New Year's Day. Picture: Nasser Nasser/AP

Brussels - NATO says it is closely monitoring the situation in the region following the US killing of top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani in Iraq, where the alliance is carrying out a training mission.

"NATO is monitoring the situation in the region very closely. We remain in close and regular contact with the US authorities," says acting NATO spokesperson Dylan White.

"At the request of the Iraqi government, NATO's mission in the country is helping to strengthen the Iraqi forces and prevent the return of ISIS. The safety of our personnel in Iraq is paramount. We continue to take all precautions necessary," he adds.

At a NATO summit in 2018, the leaders of the trans-Atlantic alliance expressed concern about "Iran's destabilizing activities in the wider Middle East region ... including Iran's support to a variety of armed non-state actors." NATO defence ministers also discussed the issue in June.

dpa