The late Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commander Qassem Soleimani supported the United States invasion of Iraq, according to Iraqi Kurdish leader Masoud Barzani.
In an interview with Asharq al-Awsat published on Sunday, Barzani revealed that he had met with Soleimani prior to the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
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Barzani, who is the leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and served as the President of Iraqi Kurdistan from 2005 to 2017, stated that Soleimani was responsible for the Iraq file in the Iranian government at the time of their meeting.
When asked if Soleimani supported the invasion of Iraq and the overthrow of Saddam Hussein, Barzani responded “yes.”
Barzani also explained that Iran could not publicly announce their support for the US-led invasion, but saw the toppling of Saddam as a “great victory.”
The two countries were previously at war from 1980 to 1988 under Saddam’s rule.
Soleimani, who led the Quds Force, the overseas arm of the IRGC, was killed in a US airstrike in Iraq on January 3, 2020, ordered by then President Donald Trump.
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