Iraqi Popular Forces Not to Fight alongside Americans in Anbar: Iraqi Leader

A senior leader of the Iraqi popular forces voiced concern about the consequences of the US military presence in battles against terrorists in al-Anbar province, and reiterated that his troops will not participate in joint operations with the Americans.

“The Iraqi popular forces are concerned about the Americans’ partnership in any military operations in al-Anbar province,” Hassan al-Sari told FNA on Wednesday.

Warning that the US has sought to annihilate the popular forces in Iraq since the beginning, he reminded Washington’s record of supporting the terrorist groups, including the ISIL.

“Popular forces’ joint operations with the American forces is impossible unless they get coordinated with the Iraqi government and Baghdad specifies them a set of objectives completely different and separate from our goals and objectives,” Sari underlined.

Earlier this week, the tribesmen of the Western province of al-Anbar complained that the US meddling in the fight against the ISIL had impeded their victory over the Takfiri terrorist group.

“The US meddling prevents the Iraqi army and popular forces from concluding their battles against the ISIL,” Sheikh Mohammad al-Harat, spokesman for Al-Anbar Tribesmen, told FNA on Monday.

He underlined that prolonging the Anbar battle would also negatively influence the Iraqi army’s battles against the terrorists in other provinces.

Sheikh al-Harat noted that the US military advisors usually rejected the Iraqi army’s military plans against the terrorist groups in Anbar province, but when these plans were put into action, they proved successful.

Also, earlier this month, an Iraqi analyst said that the US was using some tribesmen in the Western province of Anbar to pressure the government in Baghdad to keep the popular forces away from the battle against terrorists in the volatile region.

Mohammad Na’na expressed regret that Washington has succeeded in persuading certain tribal leaders in Anbar to join its so-called war on the ISIL.

“Washington is pressuring the Iraqi government to exclude the popular forces from the Anbar province mop-up operations,” he told FNA.

Na’na, meantime, warned against the United States’ negative role in the war on ISIL, saying field reports showed that the US ground troops had played no role in the operations that led to the liberation of Anbar.

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