ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Iranian-backed Asaib Ahl al-Haq has criticized Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi for abiding by the United States’ decision to reimpose sanctions on Iran.
In a statement on Wednesday, Asaib Ahl al-Haq, one of the factions of the Hashd al-Shaabi militias, rejected the US sanctions, describing Washington’s decision as a clear violation of humanitarian and legal norms.
“The sensitive situation in Iraq and its inter-linked interests require the country’s leaders to make proper decisions by considering its sovereignty, not through fear and subordination,” the statement read, urging the leaders to place “the country’s interest over others’ interests.”
Maintaining Iraq’s neutrality by not taking the side of the Iranian front does not mean it has to be part of the US front and support its unilateral decisions, Asaib Ahl al-Haq said.
During his weekly press briefing on Tuesday, Abadi said Iraq would not react to the US-Iran dispute as Washington reimposed sanctions on the neighboring country but said Baghdad would abide by them “to protect the interests of our people.”
“Asaib Ahl al-Haq regrets the remarks made by the Iraqi Prime Minister,” the statement continued, adding it was unnecessary for Abadi “to bound himself and the state of Iraq with such an obligation since he is running a caretaker government and should not make such a decisive decision.”
“We assure that such a decision is non-binding for the next government,” the Shia militia said. “We hope the new government’s decision considers Iraq’s sovereignty and interests.”
Meanwhile, Iraqi President Fuad Masum, in an interview with US-based al-Hurra Iraq on Tuesday, warned of an Iranian response that might affect the situation in Iraq and its neighboring countries as well.
On Monday, the Trump administration announced the first stage of the re-imposition of economic sanctions on Iran which had initially ended with the 2015 nuclear deal.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany