As the political turmoil in Iraq subsides, Iran says it wants the neighboring Arab country to be stable and powerful, lauding the wisdom shown by all sides in overcoming the “great sedition.”
Iranian Foreign Ministry said in a statement released on Wednesday morning that the Islamic Republic welcomes the return of peace to Iraq.
“Iran has always wanted a stable, secure, and powerful Iraq that plays a constructive role in regional developments and has never withheld its support for Iraq’s political and legal processes and institutions,” the statement read.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran, expressing its satisfaction with the return of peace to Iraq while asking for [divine] mercy for the dead and wishing the injured in the recent incidents [good] health, appreciates the patience, wisdom, and tactfulness of the government and people of Iraq and all legal institutions of the country in overcoming this great sedition,” it added.
The Iranian Foreign Ministry also said the only way Iraq can get out of the current crisis is through dialog, protection of citizens’ rights, and adherence to the constitution and political processes.
Iraqi supporters of prominent Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr withdrew on Tuesday from Baghdad’s high-security Green Zone after he demanded an end to two days of unrest that left 30 dead and hundreds wounded.
Sadr had given his followers “60 minutes” to withdraw after which he would “disavow” those who remained.
“I apologize to the Iraqi people, the only ones affected by the events,” he said in a speech from his base in the holy city of Najaf. “Shame on this revolution... Regardless of who was the initiator, this revolution, as long as it is marred by violence, is not a revolution.”
“I thank the security forces and members of Hashd al-Sha’abi,” he added, referring to the Sadrist movement’s main rival faction, also known as the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU).
Tensions have built up in Iraq amid a political crisis that has left the country without a new government for months. Violence erupted on Monday afternoon as Sadr’s supporters stormed the government palace inside the Green Zone after their leader announced his resignation from politics.
Like Sadr, other top Iraqi figures also denounced violence and called for calm, including PMU’s leader Falih al-Fayyadh who called for restraint among all factions for the good of Iraq.
In its Wednesday statement, the Iranian Foreign Ministry also said all Iraqi political groups and movements should act responsibly and cooperate in the political process with the aim of forming a new government.
It said the Islamic Republic asks Iraqi patriots to pursue their demands within the Arab country’s laws and through legal channels to “block the way for any exploitation by Iraq’s ill-wishers.”
The Islamic Republic of Iran is certain that the Republic of Iraq is capable of passing though the difficult situation quickly, the statement said.