Iraq’s powerful Popular Mobilization Units (Hashd al-Sha’abi) are in the midst of a struggle over who will control them and whether they will remain as one umbrella-group of brigades or split apart. Recent reports that up to four key PMU brigades could pass to control by the Prime Minister’s office in Baghdad have led to questions about the underlying disputes driving the changes.
A letter circulating in Iraq from the Prime Minister’s office signed by Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi and presented as his government’s decision asserts that four brigades will come under the control of the head of the armed forces and the Prime Minister. Currently the Prime Minister is Adil Abdul-Mahdi. However he resigned in November 2019 during the protests that rocked Iraq and there have now been three different prime-minister-disignates who have failed to form a government. The letter would appear to separate these four units from the control of the Popular Mobilization Commission. The letter was drafted Sunday, April 19 and appeared on April 22…
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