Iraq under US pressure over Shia militias role

The US’s attempts to pressure Iran, by criticising Iraqi Shia militias backed by Iran, has deepened tensions between Washington and Baghdad.

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    US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo came to Iraq on an unscheduled visit on Tuesday because of what he said were specific threats to Americans in the country.

    The statement was directed towards what the US calls Iran’s proxy forces, around 60,000 Iraqi fighters with pro-Iran armed groups in Iraq known as Popular Mobilisation Forces or Hashd al-Shaabi.

    The US and Iran are both important strategic partners for Iraq.

    But those relationships also mean the country is now coming under increasing diplomatic pressure from both Washington and Tehran.

     

    Al Jazeera's Charles Stratford reports from Baghdad.


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