France voices solidarity with US over Iraq embassy attack

French Defense Minister Florence Parly speaks during a press briefing on February 8, 2018 in Paris. (File photo: AFP)

French Defense Minister Florence Parly has condemned the attack on the US embassy in Baghdad by pro-Iranian demonstrators and expressed solidarity with France’s coalition partner in a New Year’s address to French troops.

“France strongly condemns the attacks carried out against the positions of the international coalition in Iraq and today’s attempted incursion into the US embassy compound in Baghdad,” Parly told the crew of the French frigate Courbet with whom she rang in the New Year.

In the speech, the text of which was only made public on Wednesday, she also expressed “full solidarity” with the US.

Thousands of Iraqi supporters of the largely Iranian-trained Popular Mobilization Forces (PMU) marched on the US embassy on Tuesday, furious over the deaths of 25 pro-Iranian militia members in US air strikes.

They set a security post on fire, breached one of the compound’s outer walls and threw rocks but were repelled by US troops who used tear gas to defend the building.

On Wednesday, hundreds of demonstrators remained outside the embassy, despite orders from the PMU for an end to the sit-in.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:53 - GMT 06:53
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