Iraqi prez warns against foreign interference in Iraq’s internal affairs

Iraqi President Barham Salih warned against any foreign interference in Iraq’s internal affairs and urged respect for Iraq’s sovereignty.

Salih’s comments came during his meeting with the head of the Hashd Shaabi forces Falih al-Fayadh, according to a statement by the Presidency’s media office released on Sunday, Xinhua news agency reported.

During their meeting, they discussed the security developments in Iraq and the need to strengthen the security forces to achieve stability in the country, the statement said.

They also highlighted the importance of continuing anti-terrorism and pursuing the militants of the extremist Islamic State (IS) group who are trying to destabilize some areas.

The meeting came two days after the US Department of the Treasury imposed sanctions on al-Fayadh for his alleged role in violent repression of anti-corruption protests in 2019.

Earlier, a statement by the Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the US sanctions decision against al-Fayadh was an “unacceptable surprise.”

It is worth noting that the US Department of the Treasury had previously issued a list of sanctions against Iraqi politicians, members of parliament, and commanders of the paramilitary Hashd Shaabi forces.