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Iraq issues arrest warrant for Trump over drone strike killing

Baghdad — Iraq issued a warrant for the arrest of U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday as a part of a Baghdad court docket’s investigation into the killing of a high Iraqi paramilitary commander. Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy head of Iraq’s largely pro-Iran Hashed al-Shaabi paramilitary community, died in the identical U.S. drone strike that killed storied Iranian normal Qasem Soleimani at Baghdad airport on January 3 final 12 months.

The strike on their motorcade was ordered by Mr. Trump, who later crowed that it had taken out “two (males) for the worth of 1.”

“An arrest warrant in opposition to the outgoing President of america of America, Donald Trump, has been issued in accordance with the provisions of Article 406 of the Iraqi Penal Code,” Iraq’s Supreme Judicial Council confirmed in a press release on Thursday, including that the investigations would proceed “to establish others who participated in committing this crime, whether or not they’re Iraqis or foreigners.”

The United Nations particular rapporteur for an extrajudicial, abstract or arbitrary executions, Agnes Callamard, has described the dual killings as “arbitrary” and “unlawful.”

Iran already issued a warrant for Mr. Trump’s arrest in June, and requested Interpol to relay it as a so-called “pink discover” to different police forces around the globe. Interpol made it clear there was no intention to fulfill Iran’s request.

Not like adversary Iran, Iraq is a key U.S. ally within the Center East. Whereas the U.S. navy presence within the nation has diminished considerably underneath President Trump’s orders, to round 2,500 troops at current, billions of U.S. tax {dollars} have been spent, and American forces have been killed, shoring the Iraqi authorities as much as defend itself from terrorist teams, and to assist it resist the affect of its neighbor to the north, Iran.

It was the court docket for east Baghdad that truly issued the warrant for Mr. Trump’s arrest underneath Article 406 of Iraq’s penal code, which supplies for the demise penalty in all circumstances of premeditated homicide, however the Supreme Judicial Council, which runs all of Iraq’s courts very similar to the U.S. Division of Justice, confirmed the warrant.

Whereas the soon-to-be-former U.S. president could also be unlikely to go to Iraq any time quickly, the order for his arrest highlights the large resentment in opposition to U.S. coverage in Iraq and the deeply entrenched affect of Iran amongst Iraq’s massive Shiite Muslim inhabitants.

The U.S. navy had braced for any attainable retaliatory assaults by Iran or Iraq’s pro-Iran militias, which have fired rockets at American bases many occasions because the strike final 12 months, however there was no violence on the anniversary of the assault over the weekend.

Iraq’s nationwide authorities has at occasions struggled to keep up cordial relations with each its greatest international associate, Washington, and its neighbor Iran.

Even because the court docket issued the arrest warrant on Thursday, U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Matthew Tueller met close by in Baghdad with President Barham Salih to debate “the significance of decreasing tensions and avoiding escalation, supporting efforts to boost safety, stability and peace within the area, and resolving the excellent points by dialogue,” based on a press release posted on Salih’s Twitter feed (beneath).

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