Iraqi Shiite leader Moqtada al Sadr ordered his armed followers to withdraw from the roads in and around Baghdad’s Green Zone within an hour. In the statement released by the former political leader’s office, the Sadrist militiamen are urged to put an end to the violent clashes that have invaded the Iraqi capital since yesterday, 29 August, causing deaths and injuries. Sadr then confirmed the decision, announced just before the clashes, to “permanently withdraw from political life”. Mortars, rocket launchers, Katyuscia rockets and Grad missiles. These are the heavy weapons used in clashes around Baghdad’s Green Zone, the area that houses government buildings, embassies, offices of the UN and international organizations, therefore the symbol of the international presence in the city. This was reported by the Iraqi and pan-Arab TV stations which since yesterday 29 August have continued to show images of fighters aboard trucks on which they are mounted large-caliber machine guns. The clashes see on the one hand i Pro-Iranian Shiite militiamen of the armed parties supported by the former premier Nuri al Maliki and on the other i sadristssupporters of the Shiite leader Moqtada al-Sadrthat yesterday has formalized his withdrawal from politics.
A decision that sparked the rebellion of his followers in protest against the pro-Iranian Shiites and which soon led to theassault on the presidential palace. In the night, headquarters of the pro-Iranian Shiite armed parties were targeted with rocket launchers and Katyuscia. Local press sources currently matter at least 27 protesters killed and 400 people injured. Iraqi TV al Iraqiya reports the news of at least three policemen killedspecifying that, however, this is a budget that has not yet been confirmed by the interior ministry and other institutional sources.
“National tranquility in Iraq is preserved by legal means”
«I am deeply troubled by the new spiral of violence in Iraq in the aftermath of the clashes that have so far been at least 32 dead in Baghdad in the ranks of supporters of the Shiite leader Moqtada al-SadrSaid the premier of Iraqi Kurdistan Masrour Barzani. «I spoke to the premier Mustafa Al-Kadhimi to emphasize that we are ready to help restore the peace and the stability for the whole country. It is time for a full and frank dialogue on the profound and serious issues facing the country ”, continued Barzani. “We have to be brave enough to recognize the mutual differences and accepting that the situation we all find ourselves in now requires an yeslasting olution“.
The Foreign Minister of the Islamic Republic also spoke Hossein Amirabdollahianduring a meeting a Tehran with the Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein. «Peace of mind and national solidarity in Iraq is preserved through legal channels “he said,” it is necessary that internal issues be resolved in the legal sphere and without damaging the authority of the government “, he stressed, speaking with his Iraqi counterpart who expressed gratitude for Tehran’s approach regarding developments a Baghdad. “The security of Iran and Iraq are linked,” said Hussein, stating that Iraq will never allow its territory to be used to carry out threats against Iran.
The appeal of the Farnesina: “An end to the dangerous escalation”
Meanwhile Italy expressed strong concern for the ongoing riots in the Iraqi capital. “There have been victims and injuries, the appeal to all interested parties is for moderation so that a dangerous escalation is put to an end without delay”, wrote the Farnesina in a note. «The right to manifest freely one’s dissent cannot translate into violence And clashes“, Continues the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation,” it is necessary that all the representative institutions can function regularly in compliance with the Constitution and Iraqi law and in the interest of the entire population ”.
“There is a risk of airport blockade”
According to reports from the Iraqi news agency Ninafor now theBaghdad International Airport remained open and scheduled flights continue to depart and land without any changes.
“However, this is an extremely volatile situation”, he adds, “which could change over the course of hours”. The news agency also reports that many passengers departing from Baghdad but coming from other regions of Iraq fear that they will not be able to arrive at the airport due to the curfew and gods road blocks. Just as passengers arriving in Baghdad fear being stuck at the airport.