Contrary to what many Iraqis say, it is not surprising that the US Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control announced sanctions against the head of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) and former Iraqi National Security Advisor Faleh al-Fayyad for his links to serious human rights violations and for ties between PMF members and Iran. In October 2019, the PMF attacked Iraqi civilians who were demonstrating against corruption, unemployment, and deteriorating economic conditions, and most importantly against Iranian interference. The attack was with the support of the Revolutionary Guard, which has been a controlling force in Iraq since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime and his execution.
Head of the Popular Mobilization Unit militias Falih al-Fayyadh speaks during the forty days memorial, after the killing of Iran's Quds Force top commander Qassem Soleimani and Iraqi militia commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis. (Reuters)
A handout picture provided by the office of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on January 17, 2020 shows Iranians chanting slogans during friday prayers in the capital Tehran, under portraits of slain Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani (L) and Iraq's Hashed al-Shaabi military network deputy chief Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis. (AFP)