Iraqi pro-Iran faction warns the US to withdraw

Iraq’s Iran-backed group, Kataeb Hezbollah, recently repeated calls for US troops to withdraw from Iraq, according to Arab News and agencies on May 8th.

The warning comes months after the pro-Iran group halted attacks on US forces based in the country.

Kataeb Hezbollah spokesman, Abu Ali Al-Askari, said the group does not believe “the American enemy’s seriousness in withdrawing the troops and dismantling its spy based in Iraq.”

The Iraqi government was also accused in the same statement of aiding the US presence.

As Israel’s war on Gaza and Hamas threatens regional stability US troops based in the Middle East have been targeted over 165 times – primarily in Iraq and Syria.

The Islamic Resistance of Iraq, a coalition of Iran-backed factions including Kataeb Hezbollah, claimed responsibility for most of the attacks.

READ: Iran-backed militias regroup in eastern Syria

The US considers Kataeb Hezbollah a terrorist group and has repeatedly targeted the group in air strikes.

The Islamic Resistance of Iraq claimed responsibility for a deadly drone strike on a US base in Jordan that killed three soldiers on January 28th.

In response US forces targeted the pro-Iran factions including Kataeb Hezbollah, with the group then calling a halt to attacks against US bases.

Meanwhile the US currently has around 2,500 troops in Iraq and 900 in Syria as part of a US-led international coalition targeting ISIS.

READ: Iraq repatriates citizens from ISIS-linked Syrian camp

At the request of the Iraqi government, the coalition was stationed in Iraq in 2014 to counter ISIS’ rapid territorial gains.

But in February both the US and Iraq continued discussions about the future presence of the coalition in Iraq.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mohamed Shia Al-Sudani has been calling for the conclusion of the US-led coalition’s mission.

 

Arab News / Agencies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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