Wednesday, 29 January, 2020

Iran calls on US to quit destructive policies in region

Iran has called on the United States to abandon its destructive policies in the region as Tehran rejects Washington’s groundless accusation that the Islamic Republic is behind anti-US protests in Iraq.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Seyyed Abbas Mousavi made the remark on Tuesday while commenting on the US administration pointing the finger of blame with no rhyme or reason at Iran for recent developments unfolded in Iraq in the aftermath of Washington’s military invasion of the Arab country as well as its interference in Iraq’s domestic affairs.

US forces on Sunday conducted drone strikes on a number of bases for Kata’ib Hezbollah, which is part of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) known by the Arabic name Hashd al-Sha’abi, in western Anbar province, killing at least 25 individuals and leaving another 51 injured.

The US attack prompted massive public anger in Iraq on Tuesday, with protesters storming the US Embassy in Baghdad and seizing the building after American diplomatic personnel had been forced to evacuate.

“The astonishing insolence of US officials is to such an extent that after massacre of 25 people and wounding a large number of Iraqis and violating Iraq’s territorial integrity and national sovereignty, they are now playing a flagrant and unsavory blame game and attribute the Iraqis’ protests against those brutal actions to the  Islamic Republic of Iran,” Mousavi said on Tuesday.

The Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman called the US claims an “insult” to the Iraqi people, adding that Washington must not expect Iraqis to remain silent over the bloodshed.

The official said, “The Americans have on the one hand, ignored Iraqis’ call for independence and on the other, forgotten their role in supporting former dictator Saddam Hussein and the emergence of Daesh terrorist group.”

Mousavi also warned American officials against any unpremeditated reaction and called on the White House to rethink about its ruinous policies in the region.

US accusations serve as distraction

Also on Tuesday, Iran’s ambassador to the United Nations Majid Takht-Ravanchi said the US accusations against Tehran were aimed at deflecting attention away from the 17-year invasion of Iraq and the carnage of hundreds of thousands of innocent people in the Arab country.

“The US accusations against Iran are meant to divert the public attention from Iraqi people’s indignation about the recent brutal massacre of Iraqis by Washington, and beyond that, for causing distraction from the invasion of Iraq that has over the past 17 years resulted in the death of more than 300,000 innocent Iraqis,” the envoy said.

Takht-Ravanchi also underlined the pivotal role that the PMU has played in fight against Daesh and the defeat of the Takfiri terrorist group in Iraq, saying the popular Iraqi volunteer forces were the most important guarantor of non-emergence of the terrorist outfit.

Reacting to the developments in Iraq, US President Donald Trump had said in a tweet earlier in the day that Iran would be to blame and also be held “fully responsible.”

“Iran killed an American contractor, wounding many,” Trump tweeted. “We strongly responded, and always will. Now Iran is orchestrating an attack on the US Embassy in Iraq.”

Those casualties came in what the US described as a rocket attack targeting a military base located near the Iraqi city of Kirkuk on Friday.

Washington pointed the finger at Iran for that attack, an allegation vehemently rejected by Tehran.

In response to the incident, the US military launched the deadly air raids on Iraq’s PMU, which Washington and its allies claim is an ally of the Islamic Republic.

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