Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei said yesterday that the US is "taking revenge" on the Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF) in Iraq, for defeating the terrorist group Daesh, commenting on the accusations made by US President Donald Trump that Iran is behind the storming of the American embassy in Baghdad.
"Look at what the United States is doing in Iraq and Syria; it is taking revenge on the PMF for defeating Daesh. The movement has destroyed Daesh created by the United States, and they [the Americans] are taking revenge now," Khamenei said.
Responding to Trump's threats, Khamenei stressed that Iran "will unhesitatingly confront any party that threatens it. If the Islamic Republic decides to challenge and fight, it will do so unequivocally. We are vigorously defending the interests, dignity and glory of the Iranian nation."
"If you are wise enough – and you are not – you will see your crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan, which made the countries hate you," Khamenei said addressing Trump.
Earlier yesterday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused leaders of the Iraqi PMF of being behind an attack on the US embassy in Baghdad. "The attack today was orchestrated by terrorists – Abu Mahdi al Muhandis and Qays al-Khazali – and abetted by Iranian proxies – Hadi al Amari and Faleh al-Fayyad. All are pictured below outside our embassy," he wrote on Twitter.
The attack today was orchestrated by terrorists – Abu Mahdi al Muhandis and Qays al-Khazali – and abetted by Iranian proxies – Hadi al Amari and Faleh al-Fayyad. All are pictured below outside our embassy. pic.twitter.com/2QfGGrfmDd
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) December 31, 2019
On Tuesday, dozens of protesters stormed the American embassy in Baghdad, and set fire to two gates and surveillance towers, before Iraqi forces drove them away.
This came in response to US air strikes against the Iran-backed Kataib Hezbollah militia that killed 25 fighters.
Protests continued in the US embassy area yesterday and the embassy's security forces fired tear gas at protesters in an effort to disperse them.