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Pro-Iran militias in Iraq fight to expel foreign troops

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Armed militias, who are believed to be loyal to Iran in Iraq have been recently calling for the removal of foreign troops from the country. Apparently, they find themselves supported by parliamentary attempts by MPs of pro-Iran factions to pass a law forcing the government to remove these troops, especially American ones.

Reports have been circulated about an alleged reinforcement to US elements in the Iraqi bases.

An informed source denied news about the arrival of extra US troops to Mosul, adding that some of the troops, however, moved from their original positions in the presidential palaces to some districts to carry out exercise and certain tasks.

"The population believes there are American troops that have arrived in Mosul and this is untrue," the source said.

US officials say that about 5,000 troops are in bases inside Iraq. The White House said that the US military presence is about curbing Iran's influence and fighting ISIS.

Parliamentary support

Earlier in January, Sadiqun movement Parliament Member Ahmed Kanani said that a draft law to remove foreign forces from the country is still prepared by the Parliament's legal committee.

In a press statement, Kanani affirmed the importance of speeding up efforts to issue the legislation to remove the foreign troops from Iraq.

Discussing the law will be placed on the agenda of the upcoming sessions, Kanani said, adding that "these forces will stay longer inside the country, which poses a lot of questions and doubts."

The Parliament's security and defense committee said that the plan to remove the US combat troops from the country does not include a timetable.

Foreign troops reduced

Prime Minister Adil Abd al-Mahdi revealed that foreign troop numbers in Iraq fell by a quarter during 2018, as the fallout fizzled from Washington's announcement it was withdrawing from neighboring Syria, AFP reported.

"In January 2018 there had been almost 11,000 foreign fighters, about 70 percent of them are American, the others are from other countries," Abd al-Mahdi told a weekly press briefing on Tuesday evening.

"In December, the numbers have been reduced to almost 8,000, and the American troops are around 6,000... maybe I am wrong by some hundreds."

US expulsion rejected

A poll conducted by The Baghdad Post earlier indicated that a seemingly wide majority of Iraqis favor the existence of US troops in the Iraqi territory to continue their fight against terrorism.

"We call on Israel, not just America, to stay in Iraq to get the Iranian forces and the Shiite religious parties out of Iraq," says Sadiq al-Iraqi from Basra.

"Look at the Arabian Gulf, where there are American forces and look at Basra, where there are Iranian forces," he added, arguing that the situation in the Arab Gulf is good due to the presence of US troops, while it is deteriorating on the other side in Basra due to the alleged presence of Iranian troops.

Jaad bin Dirham said that Iran has demolished the resources of Iraq, adding that Iraq is at least able to make understandings with the US, which is a superpower and can build giant projects and factories in Iraq.

Last Modified: Monday، 21 January 2019 02:36 AM
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