Iraq PM: US and Iran Won’t Use Iraq as Ground for ‘Settling Accounts’

Newly installed PM releases protesters

Newly approved by the parliament, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadimi is trying to stake out a position palatable to the public after months of protests and international tensions, saying he will not allow Iraq to become a ground for “settling accounts” between the US and Iran.

This is a big concern for Iraq, which has seen the US and Iran squaring up for a big proxy war on Iraqi soil. This was why Iraq’s parliament called on US forces to withdraw from the country, though the US ultimately refused.

Kadimi is the latest of several candidates for premiership trying to get a handle on the country’s woes, and he has also moved to release detained protesters, while promising compensation for people who lost relatives in the various anti-protest crackdowns.

The big challenge is going to be delivering on major political reforms the protesters have demanded, with an eye toward separating the existing political class, with its heavy ties to foreign interests, from control of elections.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.