Iran lawmaker says US behind Iraq unrest
“Iran considers the invaders of Iraq responsible for terrorist activities in the Shia- and Sunni-populated areas [of Iraq],” Fars News Agency quoted Deputy head of Iran’s Majlis (Parliament) National Security and Foreign Policy Committee Hossein Ebrahimi as saying on Saturday.
“[Iran] asks all the Muslims of Iraq to dash the hopes of the US through maintaining their solidarity,” he added.
The Iranian lawmaker made the remarks after three explosions targeted Muslims pilgrims near the holy city of Karbala in central Iraq, killing nine people and wounding 70 others. The blasts came as visitors are overwhelming the city to attend the celebrations marking the birth anniversary of the 12th Shia Imam, Mahdi (PBUH).
Ebrahimi described the terrorist attacks as US measures to widen the religious rifts in the violence-hit country.
“The Americans, through bombings in Karbala and [carrying out] acts of terrorism in Shia-populated areas, seek to frame Sunni brothers of acting against the Shia but the vigilance of the Shias will thwart this US conspiracy,” the official said.
The US led the invasion of Iraq in 2003, under the pretexts that former dictator Saddam Hussein was in possession of weapons of mass destruction.
However, later it was revealed that not only the former Iraqi regime was not in possession of the arms, but also that the US and British leaders, who had defended the military action, knew about the non-existence of such weapons.
Over one million Iraqis have been killed during the invasion, according to the prestigious British polling group, Opinion Research Business (ORB).