In recent weeks, political and military pro-Iran elements in
Pro-Iran Iraqi elements – both those in the Iraqi parliament and those in the PMU, called on Prime Minister Al-Mahdi to divulge the deployment and location of U.S. forces in Iraq.
At the same time, pro-Iran Shi'ite members of parliament are working on legislation to expel foreign forces from
At the same time, it should be noted that Sunni and Kurdish political blocs support the
Earlier, during his December 26, 2018 visit to the 'Ain Al-Assad base in
In addition, these militias have threatened a harsh response should
It is noteworthy that, in recent weeks, the PMU forces claimed that they had responded to "provocations" by
This report reviews statements by Iraqi elements about Iraqi legislation to expel foreign forces from the country, and threats against
Shi'ite Parties: The Law Will Designate The Americans As Occupiers; PMU: We Will Implement The Law By Force
As noted, in recent weeks members of pro-Iran Shi'ite parties in
On February 1, 2019, MP Badr Al-Zaidi of Muqtada al-Sadr's Alliance Towards Reforms Party, member of the Parliament Security and Defense Committee, said that "the draft [law] to expel foreign forces, first and foremost the American forces" was complete, and that efforts were ongoing to cancel the strategic Baghdad-Washington agreement approved in 2008. He also said that, "The vote on the draft [law] to expel foreign forces will be one of the items heading the agenda of the second session of parliament [which opens in March]... After it is voted on [and passed], parliament will consider the
Explaining the need for the law, MP Hassan Salam of the Al-Sadiqoun faction said: "The
In tandem with the efforts to draw up a parliamentary bill, some PMU elements said they would not hesitate to enforce the law, even by force, once it is approved.
Sheikh Qais Al-Khaz'ali, secretary-general of the Asa'eb Ahl Al-Haq militia, said: "The Iraqi military and security forces will be able to implement the decision to expel the foreign forces, should a foreign force seek to impose its military presence against the will of the [Iraqi] people... The American presence does not serve the interests of
Similar sentiments were voiced by Muhammad Muhyi, spokesman of the Kata'eb Hizbullah
PMU Elements: We Will Not Be Silent In The Face Of American Provocations; We Have Precise Information About The Location Of The
As stated, elements in the PMU and its member militias threatened an aggressive response if the
On February 3, following Trump's announcement that he would leave troops in
In a February 17, 2019, interview with Al-Mayadeen TV, which is identified with the Lebanese Hizbullah, Al-Husseini summarized the information about the U.S. presence in Iraq, saying: "There are 31 American bases in Iraq; seven of them are air bases and six are intelligence centers and stations... There are 34,000
Al-Nujaba militia spokesman Hashem Al-Moussawi said: "We will never allow Iraq to become a center for threatening neighboring countries or for espionage against Iran and the neighboring countries. This is because Iraq is an independent country whose sovereignty was attained through blood and sacrifice of life... We have firmly said that the U.S. is beating the drums of war, but we will never fear that country, and will confront the U.S. to defend our country's sovereignty... The Islamic resistance has information and data about the [U.S.] bases, about the troops and the type of weapons [they have], and about [the Americans'] strange and suspicious activities in Iraq…"
Following a report on the Russia Today (RT) television channel, according to which U.S. State Secretary Mike Pompeo had clarified to Iraqi Prime Minister 'Adil 'Abdul-Mahdi that the U.S. would not interfere if Israel attacked pro-Iran Shi'ite targets (i.e. PMU targets) in Iraq, Jawad Al-Talibawy, a member of the Asa'eb Ahl Al-Haq leadership, declared: "The American forces will be within range of the fire of the Islamic resistance factions, and if the PMU or the resistance factions come under attack by Israel or America, the reaction will be painful..."
Several senior PMU officials responded to recent Iraqi media reports of uncertain reliability that the U.S. had arrested PMU activists, reinforced its presence in Iraq and even bombed PMU positions. For example, Qassem Musleh, PMU operations commander for the western Al-Anbar sector, said: "These provocations will not help the Americans, since they have lost everything in Iraq. They are hoping by means of this provocation to get us to launch a war against them, but we will do so only when they launch a war against us... While in the past we overlooked the American-Israeli attacks on the PMU forces, from now on we will not remain silent."
Lebanese Al-Akhbar Daily Publishes Photographs And Precise Information About The Locations Of Two New American Bases In Iraq
On March 2, 2019, the Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar, which is close to the Lebanese Hizbullah, reported that the Americans had begun construction of two new bases in the Al-Anbar region at the Iraq-Syria-Jordan border triangle. The daily provided the bases' coordinates and published a map showing their locations as well as "exclusive" aerial photographs. One of the bases is north of the Baghdad-Damascus highway, at 32°55'46"N 039°44'38"E, in a location previously known as the H3 airfield. The other, south of the Baghdad-Amman highway, is at 39°44'49"N 37̊°4'55"E. According to the report, the first is already partially operational, and at the second, preparations for operation are underway.
Al-Akhbar quoted Iraqi PMU officials as saying that their intelligence apparatuses are monitoring 13 American bases in Iraq and that they are receiving daily photo reports of American military activity there. They added that the aim of these new bases is to monitor the supply lines of the Tehran-Baghdad-Damascus-Beirut resistance axis, and to control the natural gas resources in the region. The PMU officials quoted in the article stressed that at the moment there was no significant movement on the ground, but that the PMU activity would "prevent the new bases from becoming operational."
Map of the region including the locations of the two new bases
Aerial photographs of the bases: 1 and 2, the first base; 3 and 4, the second
It should be noted that PMU officials refused to confirm the report in Al-Akhbar, but stressed that the U.S. knows that these bases, if established, will cause it trouble.
 See MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 7835, Iran-Backed Shi'ite Militias In Iraq: We Will Drive Out The Americans By Force, January 8, 2019; MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 7324, Shi'ite Militias In Iraq: If The U.S. Doesn't Withdraw Its Forces From Iraq, We Will Take Military Measures Against Them, February 9, 2018.
 Alarabiya.net, January 16, 2019.
 Uk.reuters.com, February 3, 2019.
 Al-Quds Al-Arabi (
 Al-Arabi Al-Jadid (
 Washingtonpost.com, December 26, 2019.
 Almaalomah.com, February 2, 2019.
 Al-Quds Al-Arabi (
 Al-Quds Al-Arabi (
 The reference is to an Iraq-U.S. cooperation agreement signed in 2008, which deals inter alia with the
 Almaalomah.com, February 2, 2019.
 Alnujaba-news.com, January 21, 2019.
 Almaalomah.com, February 4, 2019.
 Almaalomah.com, February 5, 2019.
 Almayadeen.net, February 3, 2019.
 Almayadeen.net, February 17, 2019.
 Tasnimnews.com, February 4, 2019.
 Alnujaba-news.com, January 29, 2019,
 Basnews.com, January 21, 2019.
 Al-Akhbar (Lebanon), March 2, 2019.
 Alnujaba.com, March 2, 2019; Alnujaba-news.com, March 2, 2019.