Iraq’s Kataib Hezbollah militia pledged not to attack the US Embassy in Iraq on Sunday, on the first anniversary of the killing of top Iranian general Qasem Soleimani in a US drone airstrike.
“We will neither enter the embassy of evil (the US Embassy) nor overthrow this government… there is still time,” the group’s secretary-general, Abu Hussein al-Hamidawi, said in a statement.
The pledge by the pro-Iran group comes amid heightened tensions between Tehran and Washington on the first anniversary of Soleimani’s assassination. The US has vowed to retaliate any attack by pro-Iran groups on US forces or interests in Iraq.
Soleimani, along with Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the leader of Hashd al-Shaabi militia, was killed in a US airstrike outside the Baghdad airport in Iraq last year.
Meanwhile, former Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi warned against the consequences of escalation in the region.
“Today marks the 1st anniversary of the bloody airport incident, in which leaders who fought with us to defeat Daesh/ISIS were martyred, Iraq’s sovereignty was violated and its security was breached,” al-Abadi said on Twitter.
“The escalation that we have always warned of would drive Iraq and the region into a devastating conflict, which can be overcome by adhering to wisdom, protecting the country’s sovereignty and interests, as well as adhering to state frameworks.”
*Ahmed Asmar contributed to this report from Ankara
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