Iraqi Foreign Ministry on Sunday announced it summoned Matthew Tueller, the US envoy to Baghdad after the US strikes on Iraq. Iraq’s foreign ministry also lodged official complaints with the United Nations Secretary-General and Security Council over the US air strikes on Iraqi soil.
Iraq condemned the diplomat over the killing of Qasem Soleimani, the commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force, when a US drone struck his convoy outside Baghdad’s airport on Friday.
The Foreign Ministry said this was a blatant violation of Iraqi sovereignty and contradicts the agreed-upon missions of the international coalition.
US envoy Tueller was told the attack was against the bilateral agreements and the Iraqi territory should not be used to attack other countries. These US air operations are illegal, the statement said, adding that this would raise the tension in the region.
The foreign ministry said that the complaint to the UN Security Council is about “American attacks and aggression on Iraqi military positions and the assassination of Iraqi and allied high level military commanders on Iraqi soil”.
It described the attacks as “a dangerous breach of Iraqi sovereignty and of the terms of US presence in Iraq.” It called on the Security Council to condemn the attacks.
Separately, in an extraordinary session of parliament today, Iraqi parliamentarians voted to expel all US troops from Iraq.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, who gave Soleimani the country’s highest honor last year, vowed “severe retaliation” in response to his killing. Thousands mourned his death in Iraq, Iran and Gaza.
The Pentagon accused Soleimani of plotting the embassy attack and planning to carry out additional attacks on US diplomats and service members in Iraq and the region.
Qassem Soleimani was the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force and the mastermind of its regional security strategy. He was killed early Friday near the Baghdad international airport along with senior Iraqi militants in an airstrike ordered by President Donald Trump. The attack has caused regional tensions to soar and tested the US alliance with Iraq. Fearing escalation, NATO has suspended it’s training activities in Iraq, while the British Navy has committed to escort every UK-flagged ship across the Straits of Hormuz.
Showing no signs of seeking to reduce tensions, the US president has since issued a stern threat to Iran on Twitter, saying that the US has targeted 52 Iranian sites that it would strike if Iran attacks Americans or US assets in response to the US drone strike that killed Soleimani. He later added that the US will use ‘new’ equipment to strike Iran.