Iraqi cleric al-Sadr vows to be 'the first soldier' to defend Jerusalem

Provoked by the recent US decision, al-Sadr vowed to create a new brigade to defend Jerusalem, Kurdish media reports

December 9, 2017 09:27
1 minute read.
Iraqi cleric al-Sadr vows to be 'the first soldier' to defend Jerusalem

Iraqi Shi'ite Muslim leader Moqtada al-Sadr gestures as he delivers a speech over US President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, in Baghdad, Iraq December 7, 2017.. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Iraqis are invited to volunteer to a new brigade that will attempt to defend Jerusalem after the recent US decision to recognize the city as the Israeli capital sparked rage across the Arab and Muslim world, reported the Kurdish media network Rudaw.

The spokesperson for Saraya al-Salam, Safa Tamimi, claimed that “we will arm, train, and categorize the volunteers according to their specialty" during an interview on Rudaw TV.

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Saraya al-Salam is the armed wing of the Sadrist Movement, a political party led by the Shiite cleric al-Sadar that was created in 2003 and enjoys wide support across Iraqi society.

While the future brigade will not be a part of the Saraya al-Salam, Sadar warned in a speech delivered on Thursday that: “We can reach Israel through Syria,” and said he was ready to be the first soldier in such an attack.

The Iranian-backed Iraqi militia Harakat Hezbollah al-Nujaba said the recent US decision justifies targeting US forces, of which there are thousands in Iraq.

If such a brigade were to be created and mobilized it would be the first time Iraqis attempted to attack Israel directly using ground troops since the creation of the Arab Salvation Army by the Arab League during the war of 1948.

Led by the Nazi sympathizer Fawzi al-Qawuqji , the ASA recruited a few hundred Iraqis. The ASA took part in the fighting in what is today northern Israel.

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