Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Force who defeated ISIL Takfiri forces said on Saturday it had evidence showing US diplomatic missions in the Arab country have instigated the recent violence in the southern oil-rich city of Basra.
Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the second-in-command of the volunteer force, which is also known as Hashd Shaabi, held Washington responsible for the Basra unrest, saying it was actually meant to sow discord among different Iraqi political parties and movements.
“We have complete information and documents that show the US embassy and consulate in the country caused the Basra unrest,” al-Muhandis said.
He also vowed to respond to the Basra incidents and stressed that the Iraqis would never engage in another civil war.
Basra has been rocked by deadly protests since Tuesday. The protests took an ugly turn on Friday when a group of masked assailants raided government buildings and offices of political parties and set them ablaze. The Iranian consulate was among the premises gutted in the rampage.
At least 15 protesters have died in clashes with security forces since the beginning of the month, health officials have said.
Al-Muhandis revealed that the US “threatened with burning Basra” if incumbent PM Haider Abadi was not given another term.
Ties between the Hashd and Abadi are tense, al-Muhandis explained, complaining that Abadi has failed to allocate salaries for Hashd fighters.
“Abadi didn’t keep most of his promises to Hashd al-Shaabi,” tweeted al-Muhandis, but stressed that the situation will not devolve into a “Shiite-Shiite war.”