Iraqi head of government survives drone attack

Status: 07.11.2021 8:02 a.m.

Strangers attacked the residence of Iraqi Prime Minister al-Kasimi in Baghdad with an explosive-filled drone. The head of government was not injured. He called for calm.

The Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kasimi survived a drone attack on his residence in Baghdad unscathed. “The prime minister was unharmed and he is in good health,” the state news agency quoted Ina from a statement from the military security center. Al-Kasimi himself tweeted shortly thereafter that he was fine. “I demand calm and restraint from everyone in Iraq.”

Drone used with explosives

Ina reported that an explosive-filled drone was used in the early morning attack. The agency published recordings of the destruction of a building. According to unconfirmed reports on the Al Arabiya broadcaster, at least five bodyguards of the head of government were injured. The security forces had taken the “necessary measures”, the statement said.

Initially, there was no information about the background or originator of the attack. At first no one confessed to the act. The residence is located within the specially protected “Green Zone” in the center of the Iraqi capital. Western diplomats told Reuters news agency that they heard explosions and gunfire there.

The US government condemned the attack and spoke of an “obvious act of terrorism” which was directed “against the heart of the Iraqi state”. Washington offered the Iraqi security forces support in investigating the attack, said State Department spokesman Ned Price.

Protests against parliamentary elections

Supporters of heavily armed groups close to Iran had repeatedly demonstrated near the “green zone” in recent weeks. They protested against the result of the last parliamentary election almost four weeks ago, in which their parliamentary power was curtailed.

According to official information, the party of the Shiite cleric Moktada al-Sadr had won the election by a clear margin. However, one of the most influential pro-Iranian politicians in Iraq, Hadi al-Amiri, did not recognize al-Sadr’s election victory. For years, parliamentary elections have been followed by difficult negotiations on the formation of a government, which can drag on for months. The Shiite majority in the population has provided or dominated all governments since the US-led invasion in 2003.

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