Press Shia Agency – An Iraqi scholar demanded that the Iraqi government respond with determination and decisiveness following a “‘terroristic and foolish” US airstrike on Saturday that killed 11 people in al-Anbar Governorate.

Press Shia Agency – In regard to an airstrike by American helicopter gunship that killed eleven people and wounded a number of police officers and civilians following an operation in the district of al-Baghdadi in Iraqi’s western al-Anbar Governorate, Hujjat al-Islam Jawad al-Khalisi, the Friday prayer leader of Kadhimayn, issued a statement.

The senior Iraqi cleric said, “This attack by the United States represents the nature of this country during the post-Daesh period in Iraq.”

Hujjat al-Islam al-Khalisi said, “The helicopter attack in the al-Baghdadi area coincided with a new wave of bombings by terrorists in different areas, such as Tuz Khurmatu [in in Salahuddin Governorate].” 

He demanded that the Iraqi government respond to such actions with determination and decisiveness and stated, “We strongly condemn this brutal and the obvious interference by the United States in Iraq’s political, security, military and economic affairs and we stress the necessity of taking a  firm stance against this foolish act of terrorism by the hegemonic powers.”

His Eminence added, “International organizations and associations must act according to their duties against the excesses and interventions of the United States in various countries around the world.”

“As long as the United States and its allies engage in actions such as the abolition of the rights of the people of Iraq, Palestine and other countries in the world, we cannot hope for tranquility and peace,” Hujjat al-Islam al-Khalisi added.

An security intelligence source in Iraq’s al-Anbar Governorate said that seven Iraqi soldiers were killed and 11 were injured in an American helicopter strike in al-Baghdadi district of the governorate on the morning of January 27th.

The official, who did not want to be named, said in an interview with Iraq’s Moazin News that the American helicopter gunship targeted several civilian and military vehicles carrying Sharhabil al-Ubaydi, the commander of the al-Baghdadi district, and Colonel Salam al-Ubaydi, the police chief of the area. They also intended to attack the house of Shaykh Mu’adi al-Ubaydi, the head of the al-Ubaydi tribe, who lives 90 kilometres west of al-Ramadi.

The source added that among them, 11 people were wounded, including Colonel al-Ubaydi and Sharhabil al-Ubaydi, who were treated at the hospital. 

The commander of the operations in al-Jazirah and al-Badiyah in al-Anbar Governorate offered some details of the incident, “A joint force of Americans and Special Forces of al-Anbar Governorate left al-Asad Airbase with two military helicopters to the place where they thought Ali Iffat al-Sarmad was present in order to arrest him due to him having a large amount of weapons, military equipment and possession of other files. They got close but members of the Popular Mobilization Forces and police patrols in al-Baghdadi by assuming that they were under attack by Daesh forces in the area, got involved with them and fired at American forces and the American helicopters also fired at them, killing a number of police forces and injuring several people, including the police chief al-Baghdadi.”