Foreign countries must stop meddling in Iraq’s affairs: Top Iranian aide

Foreign countries must stop interfering in Iraq’s affairs and let the nation determine its own fate, says a senior advisor to Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei.

Ali Akbar Velayati made the remarks in a Sunday meeting with the UN Secretary General’s Special Representative for Iraq, Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, during which the Iranian side stressed the need for foreign countries to stop interfering in Iraq’s internal affairs.

“The great nation and government of Iraq play a direct role in determining their own fate, because people of this country have deep-rooted culture,” Velayati said, adding Iran has “very extensive and brotherly” relations with Iraq.

He pointed to the upcoming “determining” parliamentary elections in Iraq and envisaged a “very bright future” for the Arab country’s people and government.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran is ready to provide any assistance and cooperation with the friendly and brotherly country of Iraq and, as in the past, we will stand by the Iraqi government and nation,” the senior Iranian official said.

Velayati further said Iran has played a leading role in the fight against the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group, adding that the assassination of the top Iranian and Iraqi anti-terror commanders, Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, was a “wrong and terrorist move by the US.”

Terrorists of the United States military assassinated General Soleimani, the commander of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), along with Muhandis, deputy head of Iraq’s Hashd al-Sha’abi, and their companions by targeting their vehicle outside the Baghdad International Airport on January 3, 2020.

The cowardly act of terror was carried out under the direction of former US President Donald Trump, with the Pentagon taking responsibility for the strike.

In the eyes of the freedom-seeking people of the world, General Soleimani is revered as a major influential figure in defeating Daesh.

Hennis-Plasschaert, for her part, highlighted the significant role of the Iraqi people and religious leaders in determining the country’s fate and called for more unity in the country as well as free and democratic elections.