Iraqi authorities on Saturday denounced American airstrikes on sites in Iraq that were connected to Iran, claiming that the strikes demonstrated that American soldiers had turned into a menace to their host nation. This opinion is expected to accelerate calls for the withdrawal of the American-led military coalition from Iraq.
Officials from the militia claimed to have killed sixteen combatants in the strikes, including five doctors who were killed after an airstrike struck a base clinic in the western region of Al-Anbar.
Seven of the 16 casualties, according to the Popular Mobilization Forces, were caused by an American bombing on their operations center in Al-Anbar. The PMF is composed of militias that are currently a member of the security forces of the Iraqi government. A total of 36 others were reportedly hurt, while fighters who had gone missing were still being looked for.
At least one person had been killed in the attacks, and over five homes adjacent to the military center were damaged, according to the mayor of al-Qaim.
Turki Muhammad Khalaf, stated, “We were informed a day or two in advance that the area would be bombed.” As a measure of safety, he added, many of the locals living close to the base had left their houses.
The United States said that it had carried out the strikes in retribution for the death of three American troops in a drone strike on a remote facility in Jordan last week.
Following the incident in Jordan, Kataib Hezbollah announced that it was stopping its strikes against American sites in order to prevent “embarrassing” the Iraqi administration, which is under tremendous pressure from the United States to attempt to put a stop to the assaults. The militia had not responded to the Friday night strikes by Saturday evening.
The Associated Press was informed by another militia group, Harakat al-Nujaba, that while “every action elicits a reaction” is something the United States must recognize, the organization did not wish to intensify tensions in the region.
The majority of the targeted facilities were deserted when the US launched its strikes, an organization spokeswoman told the AP.
The operations against the Popular Mobilization Forces were denounced by an Iraqi government official as “blatant aggression” and an infringement on Iraqi territorial integrity.
The PMF was established in 2014 when the Iraqi army’s divisions failed to withstand the assault of the ISIS terrorist organization. The militias had responded to a call issued by the country’s most prominent Shiite cleric to combat the group.
A three-day period of mourning for the deceased were announced by the Iraqi administration.