Iraq’s Hezbollah Al-Nujaba Movement, which forms part of the Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF), have claimed that the US has been planning to “transfer” senior Daesh commanders and other terrorists from eastern Syria to neighbouring Iraq.
“Washington is insisting on the implementation of a plot to return the terrorists to Iraq by transferring a large number of ISIS [Daesh] commanders and militants from the eastern Euphrates and other parts of Syria,” the movement said in an online statement.
Referring to the US as “occupiers” they added: “We stress that the Islamic Resistance of Iraq is monitoring all your destructive plots to prevent the dangers which threaten the Iraqi provinces.”
— tim anderson (@timand2037) May 3, 2020
The announcement follows a counter-offensive made against Daesh terrorists on the weekend in the Mekeeshfa and Balad regions of the Salahuddin province resulting in the deaths of 10 PMF fighters.
Last December, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said the US were supporting Daesh and helping them “move from one area to another” and two Iraqi security experts earlier in the year stated that the US military were facilitating the return of Daesh in Iraq to restart insecurity in the country.
Qais Al-Khazali, an Iraqi member of parliament and is Secretary-General of the PMF faction, Asaib Ahl Al-Haq blamed the incident on the US, whom he also accused of collaborating with Daesh in order to undermine Iraq’s security further which will enable the US to maintain its military presence in the country, despite recent reductions amid the coronavirus pandemic. The US and Iraqi government have reportedly agreed to discuss a timetable for withdrawal in June. The request was made officially by Baghdad in January in the aftermath of the assassination of Iranian Quds Force commander, Qasem Soleimani, and a PMF commander, Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis.