Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Iraqi Factions Ready for US Escalation, Vow to "Respond with Fire"

Sun 11 Feb 2024 | 09:00 AM
By Ahmad El-Assasy

As Baghdad keenly anticipates the resumption of the US-Iraq military commission discussions today, Sunday, regarding the timeline for the withdrawal of international coalition forces, Iraqi armed factions have firmly declared their intent to militarily counter any American strikes.

A representative from what is now known as the "Islamic Resistance in Iraq," a member of the "Cave Owners" group, stated that their military response to the Americans would be timely and appropriate. 

The factions, specifically Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq and the Badr Organization, led by Qais Khazali and Hadi Al-Amiri respectively, have pledged to urge the government to expedite the American forces' departure.

Significant Escalation Anticipated

Despite the looming threat of escalation, the group, which emerged in 2019 and later joined the Islamic Resistance in Iraq, asserts its perpetual readiness for all contingencies, not merely reacting to immediate circumstances but preparing for any significant developments.

In light of recent US strikes targeting armed factions involved in attacks on American bases in Iraq and Syria, Iraq last month announced an agreement with Washington to initiate talks on the future of the US-led military coalition, aiming to establish a timeline for the withdrawal of these forces and conclude the coalition's mission.

The spokesperson for the Iraqi Armed Forces' Commander-in-Chief, Yahya Rasool, confirmed last Thursday that the bilateral military committee between the two nations would reconvene today, Sunday, to discuss and schedule the end of the international coalition's mission in Iraq.

Regional Tensions Spike Amid Israeli-Gaza Conflict

The Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip, following a surprise attack by Hamas on military bases and Israeli settlements surrounding Gaza, has heightened tensions across the region, from Iraq to Syria, Lebanon, and even Yemen, where the Houthis are active.

Over 165 attacks by Iran-backed armed factions on American bases in Iraq and Syria have been recorded. In response, the US has already launched several strikes, particularly targeting bases of the Iraqi Hezbollah Brigades.

As the situation continues to evolve, both the international community and regional players are closely watching the developments, aware that the repercussions could extend beyond the immediate theater of conflict.