TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iran’s Ambassador to the United Nations Majid Takht Ravanchi shrugged off recent remarks by some US officials against the Islamic Republic and said Washington is leveling accusations against Tehran to cover up its recent massacre of the Iraqis.
“The US’ accusations against our country are aimed at diverting public attention away from the anger of the Iraqi people over the recent brutal killing of Iraqis by Washington,” Takht Ravanchi said on Tuesday night, referring to the recent massacre of members of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (Hashd al-Sha’abi) forces in US drone strikes.
The anti-Tehran accusations are also intended to distract the Iraqis from the US occupation of the Arab country for 17 years, that has resulted in the killing of more than 300,000 innocent people, he added.
The Hashd al-Sha’abi and its affiliates are a purely Iraqi group operating under the control of the legitimate and democratic government of Iraq and in accordance with Iraqi laws, the diplomat went on to say.
US officials, including President Donald Trump, are trying to accuse Iran of encouraging the protests underway in Iraq decrying US air strikes against Hashd al-Sha’abi.
On Sunday, US forces conducted drone strikes on a number of Kata’ib Hezbollah bases in Iraq’s western Anbar province, killing at least 28 individuals and leaving another 51 injured.
Kata’ib Hezbollah is part of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units.
Following the strikes, the Pentagon issued a statement saying that it had targeted three locations of the Iraqi fighters in Iraq and two in Syria in response to alleged attacks targeting American forces.
The incident led to a massive funeral ceremony for the Iraqi martyrs, followed by a huge rally by thousands of angry protesters who reached the US diplomatic mission in Baghdad’s heavily fortified Green Zone, chanting ‘Death to America’ and burning US flags on Tuesday.
The protesters further held up signs calling for the US mission to be shut down and for the parliament to order US forces to leave Iraq.
Many protesters have set up tents, announcing plans for an indefinite sit-in until the embassy is closed and the ambassador expelled from the country.
A few hours into the protest, tear gas was fired in an attempt to disperse the crowd.