Defense Secretary Ash Carter says an American serviceman has been killed near Irbil in Iraq.

Carter revealed the death at the outset of a news conference Tuesday in Stuttgart, Germany, where he has been consulting with European allies.

Carter says "it is a combat death," but he hasn't offered any further details.

Vice President Joe Biden visited Baghdad last week to exhort leaders of the government in Iraq to resolve internal political strife and concentrate on the effort to defeat the Islamic State group.

Carter, likewise, visited Baghdad recently. The Obama administration has been pressing the effort against IS, which has been slowed down in its quest to overrun Iraq.

Carter presided earlier at a ceremony installing a new commander of U.S. European Command, Army Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti