Middle East

Ruling northern Iraq party blames militias for airport attack

In Iraq’s semi-autonomous north, Kurdistan Democratic Party warns of 'grave consequences' if attacks continue

Ibrahim Saleh   | 17.02.2021
Ruling northern Iraq party blames militias for airport attack File Photo

BAGHDAD

The ruling party in Iraq’s semi-autonomous north has accused a faction affiliated with Hashd al-Shaabi, an umbrella group of predominantly Shia militias, of being behind recent missile attacks on Erbil, the region’s capital.

In a statement on Tuesday, Kurdistan Democratic Party spokesman Mahmoud Muhammad warned of “grave consequences” if attacks in the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) area continue.

Rockets on Monday struck Erbil airport – which has a military base for the US-led anti-Daesh/ISIS coalition – and its surroundings, killing a civilian contractor and injuring eight others, including a US soldier.

The armed Hashd al-Shaabi group of nearly 40 militias is said to have links with Iran.

In the nation’s capital Baghdad, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi has formed a joint committee for further investigation.

The Guardian of Blood Brigades militia claimed responsibility for the rocket assault targeting "American occupation."

The Shia group has claimed responsibility for attacks on anti-Daesh forces in the past as well and is said to be a part of the Hezbollah Brigades, which is backed by Iran.

*Ibrahim Mukhtar from Ankara contributed to this report.

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