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PM al-Kadhimi survives an assassination attempt; al-Sadr, Barzani, and US condemn the attack

Category: Iraq News

Date: 2021-11-07T05:34:12+0000
PM al-Kadhimi survives an assassination attempt; al-Sadr, Barzani, and US condemn the attack

Shafaq News/ A drone laden with explosives targeted the residence of Iraqi Prime Minister, Mustafa al-Kadhimi, in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, early on Sunday in what the Iraqi military deemed an attempted assassination, but said al-Kadhimi escaped unhurt.

The attack, which security sources said injured several members of al-Kadhimi’s personal protection team, came after protests in the Iraqi capital over the result of a general election last month turned violent.

The United States Department of State condemned the attack and offered assistance with the investigation.

“This apparent act of terrorism, which we strongly condemn, was directed at the heart of the Iraqi state,” spokesman Ned Price said in a statement. “We are in close touch with the Iraqi security forces charged with upholding Iraq’s sovereignty and independence and have offered our assistance as they investigate this attack.”

The leader of the Sadrist Movement, Muqtada al-Sadr, and the President of the Kurdistan Region, Nechirvan Barzani, both denounced the attack as “terrorism.”

Al-Sadr said the security forces need to take charge. Barzani said the attack “portends dire consequences” and called for calm.

The groups leading protests and complaints about the result of the Oct. 10 vote are heavily-armed Iran-backed militias which lost much of their parliamentary power in the election. They have alleged voting and vote-counting irregularities.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack on al-Kadhimi’s residence in Baghdad’s fortified Green Zone, which houses government buildings and foreign embassies.

A statement from the Iraqi military said that the attack targeted al-Kadhimi’s residence and that he was in “good health”.

It provided no further details.

Al-Kadhimi’s official Twitter account said the Prime Minister Was safe and called for calm.

Sources told Shafaq News Agency that al-Kadhimi’s residence had been hit by at least one explosion and confirmed that the prime minister was safe.

Six members of al-Kadhimi’s personal protection force stationed outside his residence had been injured.

Supporters of Iran-aligned militia groups which have grown their power in parliament and government in recent years have protested the results of the October election.

Demonstrations by their supporters turned violent on Friday when protestors pelted police with stones near the Green Zone, injuring several officers.

The police responded with tear gas and live gunfire, killing at least one demonstrator, according to security and hospital sources in Baghdad.

Independent analysts say the election results were a reflection of anger towards the Iran-backed armed groups, which are widely accused of involvement in the killing of nearly 600 protesters who took the street in separate, anti-government demonstrations in 2019.

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