Iraq’s foreign ministry hit back on Tuesday at criticisms levelled by the Saudi foreign minister Adel al-Jubeir who took aim the Shi’ite-led Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) who are fighting ISIS.
“Recurrent abusive remarks and accusations by the Saudi foreign minister Adel al-Jubeir of the heroes and sacrifices of the PMU reflect that Saudis maintain their tense approach on Iraq, which is made on narrow, sectarian backgrounds,” said ministry spokesperson Ahmed Gamal in a statement.
Gamal said that approach caused Saudi Arabia “many opportunities for positive and constructive communication with regional states”, adding that Saudi policies made the kingdom one reason behind continued tensions and crises in Yemen and Syria, “which we will not allow in Iraq”.
Gamal maintained that the PMU remains “a national, courageous combat force that operates within the limits of the law enacted by the parliament, and is one of the official security formations of the state”.
In a press conference with his Jordanian counterpart on Monday, Jubeir described the PMU as a “sectarian organization that commits massacres in Iraq, backed by Iranian officers led by Qassem Suleimani,”
“There should be no place for the PMU if we want a united Iraq,” Jubeir continued.