US airstrikes southwest of Baghdad have drawn criticism from Iraq, which described them as a “unacceptable violation” of sovereignty carried out without prior consultation with the government.
Following the militias’ use of a close-range ballistic missile against US and coalition soldiers at the Ain al-Asad facility in Iraq, which resulted in many non-serious injuries and some infrastructure damage, the US claimed it launched the attacks against the Iran-backed Iraqi militias on Tuesday.
An Iraqi government spokeswoman issued a statement saying, “We strongly condemn the attack that took place without the knowledge of Iraqi government agencies, which is considered a clear violation of sovereignty and an attempt to disrupt internal security stability.”
The strike “is a clear violation,” according to the statement, of the role of the international coalition troops, which Iraq claims is to combat Islamic State extremists and support, train, and advise the Iraqi armed forces.
The coalition forces were urged “not to act unilaterally” by the Iraqi government.
Nine members of the Hashd Shaabi militia were slain in the US strike, according to sources in Iraq.
Since October, pro-Iranian militias in Iraq have stepped up their operations against US military locations in Syria and Iraq.
Additionally, they have demanded the withdrawal of foreign forces from Iraq.