Former Prime Minister Ayad Allawi condemned, Sunday, Iran for its repeated trespassing of "red lines" in Iraq by interfering in the formation of the upcoming government headed by Mohammed Tawfiq Allawi.
"Once again, Iran crosses the red lines, and proves its interference in Iraqi affairs by challenging the will of the Iraqis," said Allawi in a statement.
He added that this interference came from Ali Akbar Velayati, the senior adviser to the Supreme Leader in international affairs, by affirming that "the Iraqi Prime Minister-designate Mohammed Tawfiq Allawi will gain trust, and that the axis (Tehran – Baghdad – Damascus – Beirut – Palestine) will be one axis to expel the Americans and their allies."
Allawi continued: "While we condemn this blatant interference in Iraqi affairs, we warn Iran that it will not be able to achieve its aspirations of expansion in the Arab region, including Iraq, and this is far beyond its size and aspirations."
He added that "the principles of neighbourhood require the respect of neighbouring countries and non-interference in their affairs, which is what we wish from Iran and other countries."
Velayati's statements came during an event in Qom, on the 40th commemoration of the killing of the commander of the Quds Force in the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, Qasem Soleimani, by a US airstrike near Baghdad International Airport on 3 January.
Iran has reiterated over the past weeks that it will end the US military presence in the Middle East.
Iraqi Shiite forces allied with Iran voted on a resolution in parliament last month, calling on the government to work to end the foreign military presence in the country, which Washington rejected.
Since the beginning of October 2019, Iraq has been witnessing unprecedented protests interspersed with violent acts that caused the death of more than 600 people, according to Iraqi President Barham Salih and Amnesty International.