Assassination Attempt on Iraqi Prime Minister Just Days After Protests

11/09/2021 Iraq (International Christian Concern) – Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi was subject to an assassination attempt during the early hours of November 7 after three drones with explosives neared his home. Two of the three were shot down by security forces with a third hitting his home. Kadhimi was not injured in the attack, though six members of the security team were injured, along with damage to the home. No one has anyone claimed responsibility yet.

Kadhimi called the attack “cowardly aggression,” saying that “missiles and drones do not build nations or build a future.” Speculation suggests that Iranian groups may have been behind the assassination attempt. The commander of Iran-linked armed group Asaib Ahl al-Haq (AAH) Qais al-Khazalai had threatened Kadhimi just one day prior. Another Iran-linked group, Katib Hezbollah, said that the prime minister was “playing the role of the victim” and that there were cheaper and more successful ways to orchestrate an assassination. The United States designates both Katib Hezbollah and AAH as Foreign Terrorist Organizations, but both also have brigades within the Iraqi government-salaried Popular Mobilization Units (PMU).

Several international entities condemned the attack, including the United States and Iran. Iraqi President Barham Salih commented, “We cannot accept that Iraq will be dragged into chaos and a coup against its constitutional system.” Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, a major election winner, noted the attack against the country’s stability that aimed to “return Iraq to a state of chaos to be controlled by non-state forces”. The attack comes just days after election protests turned violent in the capital.

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