What is strange is that Sadr has a political bloc in the Iraqi government and parliament. Iraq has positive bilateral relations with the United States and is working under the Strategic Framework Agreement signed between the two countries in 2011 and voted on by the Iraqi parliament. As per the agreement, the United States is committed to provide support and assistance to Iraq on all levels.
Saad al-Hadithi, the spokesman for Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, told Al-Monitor, “The position of the Iraqi government and its prime minister, Abadi, is very clear, which is to cooperate with the United States and accept the provided support in their fight against terrorism. Those who make other statements speak for themselves only.”
“American advisers have been in Iraq since August 2014 and they are helping Iraq in its war against terrorism. They have not been targeted by any party. The presence of these advisers or any US military personnel comes as part of the Strategic Framework Agreement,” he said.
In fact, a number of US advisers have been stationed in Ain al-Asad air base in Anbar province and have not been attacked. It appears that Sadr’s statements are part of the attempts to pressure the Iraqi government and embarrass it in front of the United States, especially since the dispute between Sadr and Abadi is growing increasingly.
It is not likely that Sadr would order his forces to target US soldiers participating in the battle against the Islamic State, given the military hardships on the ground and especially since Sadr’s followers are likely following orders by the Iraqi official troops.
In the most recent protest July 15 in Baghdad's Tahrir Square, Sadr and his followers shouted, “America leave,” calling for the closure of the US Embassy in Baghdad and the expulsion of all those who work under the US government umbrella. In a statement July 13, Sadr went as far as to accuse Iraqis who worked with US institutions and applied for asylum or immigration in the United States of having no honor.
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