Saudi Arabia condemns assassination attempt on Iraqi PM

Riyadh: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has condemned the assassination attempt on Iraq’s Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, describing it “cowardly terrorist act,” the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Sunday.

The Kingdom’s ministry of foreign affairs expressed strong condemnation. “The Saudi Arabia stands united by the brotherly Iraq, government and people, in confronting all terrorists who are trying in vain to prevent Iraq from restoring its health and role,” the ministry affirmed in a statement.

On early Sunday, November 7, 2021, Iraq’s Prime Minister was targeted in a “failed assassination attempt” after an explosive-laden drone struck his residence inside Baghdad’s high-security Green Zone.

After the failed attack, Al-Kadhimi posted a video clip on his Twitter profile in which he condemned the attack, describing it as cowardly. He also called for calm and restraint.

Security sources, as per the media reports, say three drones were used in the attack. They were launched from near Republic Bridge on the River Tigris, but two were shot down. At least seven members of the prime minister’s protection force were wounded in the attack.

The attack came two days after deadly protests in the Iraqi capital over the result of a general election held on October 10.

Images published by Iraqi media show damage to parts of the residence as well as to an SUV vehicle parked in a garage.

Photo: EPA
Iraqi security forces near a damaged vehicle inspect the effects of a drone strike on the residence of the Iraqi prime minister. (Photo: AFP)
Photo: EPA

This drew widespread condemnation at the international and regional levels.

Arab condemnations

The secretary-general of the Gulf Cooperation Council, Nayef Al-Hajraf, said in a statement that the council rejects “such criminal attacks that targeted the security and stability of Iraq.”

Egypt, Lebanon, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Jordan, Palestine, Iran, Syria, and Kuwait also condemned the attack.

Global condemnations

France’s President Emmanuel Macron also condemned the attack.

Britain’s Foreign Secretary, Liz Truss, also condemned the attack and backed Al-Kadhimi’s call for calm. “We condemn the attack on Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al Kadhimi,” she said on Twitter.

“We stand with the Iraqi government, security forces and people in their rejection of political violence and strongly support the Prime Minister’s call for calm and restraint.”

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson “strongly condemned” the targeting of his Iraqi counterpart Mustafa Al-Kadhimi.

US Secretary of State Antony J Blinken spoke with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al Kadhimi to condemn the terrorist attack and conveyed his relief that the Prime minister was unharmed.

US President Joe Biden condemned the attack and said those responsible for it “must be held accountable”.