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Iraq Says US Sanction against Shia Militia Leader “Unacceptable”

The Iraqi government has objected to the US’ decision to sanction Falih Fayyadh, the chairman of Hashd al-Shaabi or Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF).

“The Foreign Ministry expresses its surprise on the decision issued by the US Treasury against Mr. Faleh Al-Fayadh, head of the Popular Mobilization Commission,” Iraq’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

“We stress that the decision was an unacceptable surprise and point out that the Ministry will carefully follow up with the current and new administration in Washington all decisions issued by the US Treasury Department against Iraqi names and work to address this matter,” it added.

Washington on Thursday added Fayyadh to the list of sanctioned Iraqis over alleged connection to human rights abuses.

“During protests beginning in October 2019, Iran-aligned elements of the PMC [Popular Mobilization Committee] attacked Iraqi civilians demonstrating against corruption, unemployment, economic stagnation, poor public services, and Iranian interference in Iraq’s domestic affairs,” the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) said in a statement. Source