Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has allegedly claimed at a press conference on Monday, January 13th that Iraqi leaders have spoken to him in private regarding their support for the presence of US troops despite public appeals for them to depart Iraq, AFP reported.
Pompeo’s words came after the Iraqi parliament had voted on whether troops should leave Iraq or remain following a US strike at the Baghdad airport that killed a top general from Iran, which also has wide influence in the country.
On the escalation with Iran, Pompeo explained at a press conference later on Monday that the nuclear deal has given Iran the liberty to fund and support militias across the Middle East region, and he urged Iran to start acting responsibly.
He then confirmed that any attempt to target any American life will not be taken lightly or go unpunished. “We have taken proper procedures against Iran to protect other people’s lives, and it has so far started to emerge as a truly weak country, and all thanks go to the Trump administration for this,” he said.
“The Iranian regime is using all its resources to destabilise the region, while President Trump together with the national security team have been trying to deter the threat posed by the regime to the region,” he continued, while referring to Qassem Soleimani as a prominent threat to the entire region and the mastermind behind the attack that killed an American in Iraq.
On Saturday, January 11th, Pompeo reaffirmed on his Twitter account the US solidarity with the Iranian people, who so far have been protesting against the regime, saying their voice was “clear” and that they are “fed up with the regime’s lies, corruption, ineptitude, and brutality of the IRGC under Khamenei’s kleptocracy.”