News On Iran & Its NeighboursIraqU.S. says won't ignore Iran-backed attacks in Iraq

U.S. says won’t ignore Iran-backed attacks in Iraq


Reuters: The United States will not “sit idly by” while its forces are harmed by Iranian-backed militias in Iraq, the top U.S. military officer, Admiral Mike Mullen, said on Thursday.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States will not “sit idly by” while its forces are harmed by Iranian-backed militias in Iraq, the top U.S. military officer, Admiral Mike Mullen, said on Thursday.

Mullen and U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told a Senate committee that while such attacks by groups linked to Iran had declined since the summer, the United States would not ignore it the attacks recurred.

“They (the Iranians) have been warned about continuing it … that if they keep killing our troops, that will not be something we will sit idly by and watch,” Mullen told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

“Iran needs to understand that we’re going to be around awhile here, making very clear to them that we’re not — we’re not simply going to ignore what Iran is doing in — in Iraq,” Panetta said.

Fourteen U.S. services members were killed in hostile incidents in Iraq in June. Most of the deaths were attributed by U.S. officials to rocket attacks by Shi’ite militias armed by Iran.

Mullen and Panetta said that the attacks stopped after a combination of military and diplomatic engagement with Tehran by Baghdad.

But they suggested the potential for such attacks remained. Mullen said Iran has shipped weapons to Shi’ite militias operating in Iraq, including roadside bombs called EFPs (explosively formed projectiles) and rocket-propelled munitions known as IRAMs (improvised rocket-assisted munitions).

“They’re shipping EFPs and IRAMs. And the IRAMs are getting bigger and bigger. And so, there is a great downside potential for destabilizing particularly southern Iraq, that actually I think Prime Minister Malaki and the Iraqi leadership is concerned about,” Mullen said.

The U.S. military is scheduled to fully withdraw its remaining troops — numbering about 40,000 — from Iraq by December 31, although Iraqi politicians are trying to decide whether to ask Washington to leave some troops beyond 2011 to continue to train their army and police forces.

Mullen said the Obama administration would consult with Congress about the matter once it had a decision from Baghdad. “But we’re — honestly, we’re just not there yet. We’d be having, from my perspective, circular conversations about this, because we just don’t know what’s going on in Baghdad,” he said.

(Reporting by Susan Cornwell; Editing by Eric Walsh)

Latest news

The Role of Students and Universities in Iran’s Nationwide Uprising

In the national uprising of the people of Iran, which started in mid-September this year, the students played a...

Snapback Sanctions, a Must Response to Iran’s Human Rights Abuse and JCPOA Violations

The protests in Iran have been going on for more than two months, even though the regime is cracking...

Growing Disintegration Among Iran Regime’s Forces

Iran has been shaken by a wave of nationwide protests since mid-September. The trigger was the death of the...

Grim Tidings for Iran’s Regime After Approval of UN Fact-Finding Mission

After many discussions and debates, the United Nations Human Rights Council has approved a fact-finding mission to investigate the...

Iranian People’s Resistance Changed the Appeasement Policy

Soon after the new US government started its obligations in January 2021, hand in hand with the European governments...

Khamenei’s Disgraceful Campaign Against Piranshahr and Javanrud, Who Will Be the Loser?

On the 67th day of Iran’s revolution, the Iranian regime attempted to put a halt to the protests in...

Must read

Grits weak on Kazemi case: Harper

The Edmonton Sun: The federal government was complicit in...

Analysis: Iran, ‘a very serious threat’

UPI: Iran today poses a five-pronged threat, warned the...

You might also likeRELATED
Recommended to you