BAGHDAD (Dispatches) – A senior Iraqi lawmaker has warned that the U.S. embassy in Baghdad has prepared a list of Hashd al-Sha’abi popular forces commanders to be assassinated or detained.
“The U.S. embassy in Baghdad has compiled a list of Hashd al-Shaabi and resistance groups commanders to be targeted if necessary. This targeting will sometimes be conducted by eliminating and assassinating them, and sometimes by arresting them,” Abdol Amor Ta’eiban al-Dabi, the representative of al-Sadeqoun fraction at the Iraqi parliament, was quoted by the Arabic-language al-Ma’aloumeh news website as saying on Tuesday.
He added that the U.S. fears Hashd al-Sha’abi’s power which stands against Washington’s destructive measures in Iraq, and warned, “The U.S. embassy has become the source of all problems and crises in Iraq.”
Earlier this month, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi said his government will never be influenced by the dictates of foreign powers about the Popular Mobilization Forces, or known as Hashd al-Sha’abi in Arabic, stressing that the PMF is part of the Iraqi nation.
“Definitely, the Popular Mobilization is an Iraqi constitutional institution, and it is part of the Iraqi security system, and part of the Iraqi national security, and we are working to support the Popular Mobilization and develop its capabilities and defenses. PMF played a major role in the fight against Daesh side by side with the Iraqi security services such as the army and Iraqi Counter Terrorism Service,’ Al-Kadhimi said in an interview with Iran’s Fars News Agency.
In another development, a senior Iraqi MP has denounced Turkey’s deployment of troops to the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region where they are pressing ahead with a military campaign against PKK militants, saying Ankara must end its occupation of the Iraqi territories.
“What is happening within the borders of the Kurdistan region represents a dangerous escalation by the Turkish army and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK),” the National Iraqi News Agency (NINA) quoted Chairman of the Security and Defense Committee in the Iraqi Parliament Mohammed Rida Al Haidar as saying.
“The Constitution does not allow the presence of refugees with affiliation to militant groups on the Iraqi soil,” he said in a televised statement.
Al Haidar also categorically denied the existence of any agreement between Baghdad and Ankara regarding the ongoing military offensive in the Kurdistan region.
Turkish military forces have launched offences in northern Iraq’s Metina and Avasin-Basyan regions in pursuit of PKK militants.
Baghdad has decried the incursion as violation of Iraq’s sovereignty on several occasions.