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Shiite commanders, politicians warn Iraqis against dealing with ‘Zionists’

2019/02/18 | 12:20

(Hatha al-Youm | Iraq News)-

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — Leaders from Shiite militias said they will consider any dealings or cooperation with any “Zionists” in Iraq as "treachery and betrayal of the country.”The declaration was signed by the Hadi al-Amiri, the head of the Iran-backed Badr Organization, Qais al-Khazali, the head of Asaib Ahl al-Haq and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy chairman of the Hashd al-Shaabi.Iraq does not recognize Israel as a state and increasingly has closer ties at several levels to Iran."Anyone who travels or relates to the Zionist entity is considered a supporter and as supporting for their criminal behavior," reads the document signed by the trio.It added that anyone caught going to Israel will be held accountable by the Iraqi law."The people of Iraq and its government reject all kinds of normalization with the Zionist entity,” it added.It claimed the United States is working to drag people with “low standards” in Iraq to be subjugated to Zionism.The Jewish people have deep historical roots in Mesopotamia and across Kurdistan. Synagogues and Jewish homes can be found throughout Iraq. Many are at risk of collapse or have been converted into churches or mosques. Between 1948 and 1951, more than 121,000 Jews left Iraq for the Holy Land in the so-called Operation Ezra and Nehemiah as Israel airlifted tens of thousands of Jews following the Iraqi government's intensified persecution following the establishment of the State of Israel.Israel announced in January that it was seeking hundreds of billions of dollars in compensation from Middle Eastern countries where Jewish people fled or were expelled from. It is not clear how many Jewish families remain in Iraq, but estimates have put the figure at just a handful. Iraq continues not to recognize the country and forbids the central and regional government from having diplomatic relations.During the ISIS conflict, heritage sites of Muslims, Christians, and Jews were targeted and/or destroyed by the extremists.











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