Not even a full day after President Trump ordered the Baghdad assassination of Iran’s top General Qasem Soleimani, sparking outrage across the Middle East and beyond, more attacks from the sky have occurred inside of Iraq, this time near Tanji Stadium in northern Baghdad, where six PMF medics have been reportedly killed.
According to Reuters:
“Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Forces umbrella grouping of paramilitary groups said that early on Saturday in Baghdad, air strikes targeting its fighters hit a convoy carrying its medics near Taji stadium.
An Iraqi army source said six people were killed and three wounded. State TV reported that it was carried out by the United States.”
This is not looking good for the US, who has just denied the air strike was their doing. Whether that is true or not, whoever carried out the attack technically committed a war crime against medical neutrality, which could go to explain the denial if in fact it was the US as Iraqi sources have been reporting.
According to Article 19 of the Geneva Convention:
Fixed establishments and mobile medical units of the Medical Service may in no circumstances be attacked.–Article 19, Geneva Convention.
To clear up some misconceptions that have been flying around, the Popular Mobilization Forces, or PMF, are an Iraqi military organization made up of around 40 different, predominantly Shia, militias. Officially formed in 2014, the PMF is now an official branch of Iraq’s military tasked with fighting back the radical Sunni jihadist factions in the region, such as ISIL, al Qaeda, and their affiliates. Recently they achieved major success in that field, finishing the job the US was allegedly there to achieve — to no success.
Among the PMF are Iran-backed militias, most notably the Kata’ib Hezbollah, who have become the targets of Washington’s most recent wave of slaughters. On December 27th the US carried out a series airstrikes that left 25 fighters dead and over double that amount wounded. Then on January 2nd some of their fighters and commanders were assassinated alongside General Qasem Soleimani at Baghdad Airport.
This most recent attack, whoever committed it, was also reportedly against the Kata’ib fighters, but, as we see, it wasn’t their fighters that were hit.
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