Iraqi government denies PMF involvement in attacks on US, British brands in Baghdad

In response to remarks made by US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller, who suggested that some leaders of the PMF do not comply with decisions made by the Iraqi prime minister, the Iraqi Ministry of Interior issued a statement clarifying the situation.
The logo of the Iraqi Ministry of Interior. (Photo designed by Kurdistan 24)
The logo of the Iraqi Ministry of Interior. (Photo designed by Kurdistan 24)

ERBIL (Kurdistan24) - The Iraqi government has refuted claims by the US State Department that the Popular Mobilization Force (PMF), also known as Hashd al-Shaabi, was involved in attacks on US and British brands in Baghdad.

In response to remarks made by US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller, who suggested that some leaders of the PMF do not comply with decisions made by the Iraqi prime minister, the Iraqi Ministry of Interior issued a statement clarifying the situation.

The Iraqi Foreign Ministry stated, "The Hashd al-Shaabi is part of the Iraqi security establishment and is attached to the General Commander of the Armed Forces. Those who attacked US brands are criminals and lawbreakers and have nothing to do with al-Hashd and will face severe legal and administrative punishment."

In recent weeks, a wave of attacks on the US and US franchies have occured in Iraq. 

On Tuesday, June 4, 2024, the Iraqi Ministry of Interior announced the arrest of individuals accused of attacking restaurants bearing American brands in Baghdad.

The Federal Ministry of Interior described these attacks as acts of sabotage and expressed regret that some of the suspects belonged to a security apparatus.

Read More: Iraqi Ministry of Interior arrests suspects in attacks on American-branded restaurants

The Ministry expressed regret that some of the arrested individuals belonged to a security service and carried out these actions under the pretext of harming American interests. They have been detained and will be referred to the competent courts.

Read More: US: Iraq Needs to ‘Hold People Accountable’ for attacks on Franchises

Addressing journalists on Wednesday, State Department Spokesperson, Matthew Miller, called on the Baghdad government to do more to stop the rash of attacks on the Iraqi franchises of US. companies.

Underscoring the difficulties that Iraq’s new leader, Prime Minister Mohammed Shia’ al-Sudani, faces in dealing with this matter is the fact that initial investigations have revealed that elements within Iraq’s security services have been involved in the assaults.

The statement comes after a security incident on Wednesday, June 5, when the Cambridge Institute for Language Learning in the al-Aruba area of Diwaniya province was attacked. According to a security source, "The attack was carried out by an unidentified motorcyclist with a grenade," resulting in injuries to one of the institute's guards. The attacker fled the scene.

Read More: Cambridge institute, American Reconstruction Company attacked in Baghdad

The Iraqi government has emphasized its commitment to holding those responsible accountable and ensuring that such criminal actions are met with appropriate legal and administrative consequences.