Pompeo warns Iran: We will respond firmly if our interests in Iraq are damaged
- 12 Hours Ago
WASHINGTON - US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned Iran on Friday of a "decisive" response if US interests were harmed in Iraq after a series of missile attacks on military bases.
This came in a Tweet for "Pompeo" on Twitter, in which he condemned the attack that occurred near the capital's airport in Baghdad this week; and wounded 6 Iraqi soldiers.
Pompeo accused "Iran's agents" of carrying out the said attack.
He added: "To Iran's leaders, the United States will respond decisively if Iran or its proxies harm US soldiers or our Iraqi partners."
"We must seize this opportunity to remind Iran's leaders that any attacks on their side or their representatives of any identity are detrimental to the Americans, our allies, or our interests, and will be answered decisively," Pompeo said.
He added, "Iran must respect the sovereignty of its neighbors and desist immediately (...) from supporting third parties in Iraq and throughout the region."
This warning comes after ten missile attacks since October 28 have targeted military bases housing US soldiers or US diplomatic missions in Iraq, including the United States embassy in the heavily fortified Green Zone in the capital, Baghdad.
Two missiles were fired on Wednesday night, Thursday, at a complex of American soldiers near Baghdad International Airport.
In one of the attacks, six Iraqi soldiers were wounded at dawn Monday, with four rockets falling on a nearby military base in the vicinity of Baghdad International Airport.
The US Secretary of State attributed the attacks, which no one has claimed responsibility for, to "Iran's agents", expressing his hope for "the speedy and complete recovery of these brave Iraqis."
Rocket attacks targeting Iraqi camps in which US soldiers are stationed have been repeated since early December.
On the fifth of this month, two rockets landed inside the "Balad Air Base", in Salah al-Din Governorate (north), two days after 5 rockets landed in "Ain al-Assad Air Force Base", in Anbar Province (west).
The attacks did not cause losses among the American forces, but they come at a time of escalating tension between Washington and Tehran, which are allies of Baghdad, amid fears that Iraq will turn into a battleground between the two countries.
US officials allude to the involvement of Shiite factions close to Tehran in the attacks.
And about 5 thousand American soldiers are deployed in several military bases throughout Iraq, in the framework of the international coalition to fight the terrorist organization "ISIS".
Iran has wide influence in Iraq, especially among the PMF factions that Tehran finances and trains.
Tensions between Iran and the United States have escalated since Washington withdrew from the nuclear agreement with Tehran last year, and imposed heavy sanctions on Tehran.