Wednesday, June 5, 2024

Pro-Iran Groups Attack US Businesses In Iraq And Call For Their Expulsion


Since May 26 there has been a series of attacks upon U.S. franchises in Baghdad. The latest was on June 3 when a KFC and Chili’s in Baghdad were set upon by around 30 people. 13 were later arrested some of which belonged to the Iraqi security forces. Al Rafidain reported that Kataib Hezbollah was behind the incidents.

 

This came after the head of Kataib Hezbollah Abu Ali al-Askari called on a boycott of American businesses and their expulsion from Iraq. This was because of the Biden administration’s support for Israel in the Gaza War but Askari also claimed the companies were fronts for U.S. intelligence to spy on Iraq.

 

These assaults are likely happening because organizations like Kataib Hezbollah can’t attack U.S. personnel at the embassy or various Iraqi bases anymore due to a ceasefire so it has found a new target American companies.

 

This will obviously have a negative effect upon the business and investment environment in Iraq. Western oil companies and American contractors have withdrawn their employees because they were attacked by pro-Iran groups. Factions like Kataib Hezbollah don’t care because they are supported by Tehran and probably want Iranian businesses to be dominant in Iraq anyway.

 

SOURCES

 

Agence France Presse, “After calls for a boycott … young men attack two restaurants in Baghdad, one of which is American,” 6/4/24

- “Iraq arrests 13 suspects over attacks on KFC branch in Baghdad,” 6/4/24

 

Bas News, “Iraqi Security Personnel Involved in Attacks on US Businesses: Ministry,” 6/4/24

 

Al Rafidain, “Hezbollah militia attacks American-brand restaurants in Baghdad,” 6/4/24

 

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