(January 2, 2020 / JNS) The Iran-backed militias and their supporters that took over the U.S. embassy compound in Baghdad a day earlier withdrew on Wednesday, the AP reported.
Tents were removed, and the demonstrators relocated to the other side of the Tigris River near the Green Zone compound, with U.S. Apache helicopters flying above, according to the report.
The pullout came after two days of clashes with American security forces, with U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper announcing on Tuesday the immediate deployment of 750 additional troops to the region in response to the attack, with more expected to follow in the coming days.
Earlier on Tuesday, a mob of Shi’ite militiamen and their supporters broke into the U.S. embassy compound in Baghdad, angered by American airstrikes on Sunday against the Iran-backed Hezbollah Brigades in Iraq. The United States accused Iran of orchestrating the attack on the embassy.
According to a spokesman for the Hezbollah Brigades, the withdrawal was not related to the expected influx of U.S. forces.
“We don’t care about these planes that are flying over the heads of the picketers. Neither do we care about the news that America will bring Marines. On the contrary, this shows a psychological defeat and a big mental breakdown that the American administration is suffering from,” said Hezbollah Brigades spokesman Mohammed Mohy according to the AP.
According to the report, militia supporter Fadhil al-Gezzi said that “after achieving the intended aim, we pulled out from this place triumphantly. We rubbed America’s nose in the dirt.”
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