Iran’s Mehr agency accused slain Iraq activist Reham Yacoub of working for US

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An Iranian state news agency had accused slain Iraqi activist Dr. Reham Yacoub of working for the US and against Iranian interests in Iraq.

Yacoub, an Iraqi activist, nutritionist and media personality was assassinated by unknown gunmen in central Basra on Wednesday.

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Yacoub took part in Iraq’s anti-government protests and had led several women’s marches.

An article by Iran’s Mehr news agency from September 2018 had accused the slain activist of cooperating with the US consulate in Basra and giving women in the city “riot-related training.”

“Under the guise of exercise and jogging, [Yacoub] gives [Basra]’s women riot-related training so they can be an important element of future demonstrations,” the article said.

Yacoub herself received “training” from US diplomats, the article said.

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The article claims the US consulate recruited Yacoub and other Basra-based activists in 2017-2018 to advance US interests in Iraq.

The article concluded that Yacoub and other activists in Basra are part of a US plot to harm relations between Baghdad and Tehran and to “destroy the image” of Iran-backed militias in Iraq and the region.

Yacoub was one of four activists who were targeted and killed in Basra on Wednesday night while one other activist was assassinated in Baghdad, according to Al Arabiya's correspondent in the Iraqi capital.

The assassination of Yacoub comes a month after Iraqi security and extremism researcher Hisham al-Hashemi was shot dead near his home in Baghdad.