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Pushing US Forces to Leave Several Iraqi Bases Led to Increased IS Attacks: Zebari

The pressure on the US forces which led to their withdrawal from several military bases across Iraq has caused the current increase in the terrorist attacks by the Islamic State (IS), a Kurdish military expert said.

The IS jihadists have inflicted the Iraqi army, federal police, and Hashd al-Shaabi militias with huge damages in the past few days after conducting several large-scale attacks in Diyala, Salahaddin and Kirkuk province.

Babakir Zebari, who served as the chief of staff of the Iraqi army from 2004 till 2015, told BasNews that the resolution which the Iraqi Shia factions passed at the parliament earlier this year to expel the US forces was a dangerous development.

He argued that the recent withdrawal of the US forces from several military bases across Iraq was one reaction to the resolution. With the absence of the US troops on the ground, Zebari believes, has led to the current IS crisis.

“The recent IS attacks in Salahaddin province were [the result of] a military catastrophe,” Zebari, who currently serves as the military advisor to Kurdistan Region president, added.

The former general also noted that the political deadlock in Iraq which has left the country without a functioning government, as well as the security vacuum created in the areas disputed between the Iraqi forces and the Kurdish Peshmerga, have altogether helped the current challenges to occur. Source