BEIRUT (AP/ABC News) — Iraq’s parliament has voted to expel the U.S. military from the country while Iran has vowed revenge against the U.S. following an airstrike that killed General Qassem Soleimani.
Iraqi lawmakers voted Sunday in favor of a resolution that calls for ending foreign military presence in the country. The resolution’s main aim is to get the U.S. to withdraw some 5,000 U.S. troops present in different parts of Iraq.
The vote comes two days after a U.S. airstrike killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani inside Iraq, dramatically increasing regional tensions.
The Iraqi resolution specifically calls for ending an agreement in which Washington sent troops to Iraq more than four years ago to help in the fight against the Islamic State group.
The resolution was backed by most Shiite members of parliament, who hold a majority of seats.
Many Sunni and Kurdish legislators did not show up for the session, apparently because they oppose abolishing the deal.
The bill is non-binding and subject to approval by the Iraqi government, but it does have the backing of the outgoing Prime Minister.
Meanwhile, Iran vowing revenge for the U.S. airstrike that killed Soleimani.
A red flag – symbolic of vengeance – raise above a mosque. Crowds of mourners lining the streets as the body of Soleimani was returned to Iran.
All 290 members of the Iranian parliament unanimously chanting ‘Death to America’ with raised fists.
Sunday, specific threats of retaliation. Top military adviser for Ayatollah Khamenei saying the U.S. military personnel and sites are sure to be targets. And former leader of the Revolutionary Guard warning that Israeli cities of Tel Aviv and Haifa are fair game, too.
But, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says Americans are safer today then they were before the strike.
“This was a bad guy, we took him off the playing field. And that’s important because this was a fella who was the glue, who was conducting active plotting against the United States of America putting american lives at risk– U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
Pompeo adding the administration had the authority to conduct these strikes, but Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer disagrees, calling the President’s foreign policy ‘erratic’ and ‘unsuccessful.’
“We do not need this president either bumbling or impulsively getting us into a major war.”– Senator Chuck Schumer (D)
The U.S. is currently sending reinforcements to the region, deploying more than 4,000 troops from the 82nd Airborne Division to Kuwait.
President Trump Tweeting a warning: “If Iran strikes any Americans or American assets, we have targeted 52 Iranian sites, some at a very high level and important to Iran and the Iranian culture.”