Report: Iraq Used Iranian Militia Snipers to Kill Protesters

Breitbart | 10/18/2019 | Staff
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Two unnamed Iraqi security officials told Reuters on Thursday that snipers from Iran-backed militia units were employed to kill civilians during the massive protests that erupted in the first week of October.

According to these sources, Shiite militia groups allied with Iran decided to start murdering protesters on their own initiative, in a bid to support the Iran-friendly but highly unpopular administration of Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi:

Evidence - Snipers - Elements - Militias - Commander

“We have confirmed evidence that the snipers were elements of militias reporting directly to their commander instead of the chief commander of the armed forces,” said one of the Iraqi security sources. “They belong to a group that is very close to the Iranians.”

A second Iraqi security source, who attended daily government security briefings, said militia men clad in black shot protesters on the third day of unrest, when the death toll soared to more than 50 from about half a dozen. The fighters were directed by Abu Zainab al-Lami, head of security for the Hashid [Hashd al-Shaabi, or Popular Mobilization Forces], a grouping of mostly Shi’ite Muslim paramilitaries backed by Iran, the second source said. The Hashid leader was tasked with quashing the protests by a group of other senior militia commanders, the source said. The sources did not say how many snipers were deployed by militia groups.

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A spokesman for the militia group denied the report, insisting “none of the elements of the PMF took part in confronting protesters.” The Iraqi Interior Ministry denied there was a deliberate plan to kill protesters with sniper fire and blamed the deaths on “vicious” killers of uncertain identity.

However, at least one senior militia commander was willing to tell Reuters his forces “jumped in” to support...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Breitbart
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