Iraqi FM Condemns Attack on Iranian Consulate in Basra

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim Al-Jaafari condemned a recent mob attack on the Iranian consulate in the Arab country’s southern city of Basra, saying that Baghdad regards the move as an attack against its own consulate, local reports said.

Jaafari said such moves (setting fire to the Iranian consulate) is not acceptable by the Iraqi government and people as well as those demonstrators who had legitimate demands.

“This attack was not only against Iranians but we regard it against ourselves,” he said, adding that those who attacked the consulate do not represent the Iraqi nation.

The top diplomat further made assurances that the Iraqi judiciary will bring the perpetrators to justice and said it will soon become clear that the elements are stooges of some who seek to undermine Iran-Iraq relations.

In the Friday attack, a mob of Iraqi protestors stormed the Iranian Consulate in Basra, destroyed the diplomatic mission’s properties, took down the flag of Iran and torched the building.

Later in the day, the Foreign Ministry summoned the Iraqi ambassador to Tehran in protest at the attack and the Iraqi police’s inaction despite the recent threats against the Iranian diplomatic mission.

Eleven people have been reported killed in the violent protests against corruption and lack of basic services in Basra over the past week.

The Iranian consulate’s building was not the first to be set on fire. The angry demonstrators had earlier set government buildings ablaze as well. The buildings included the headquarters of the local government, the ruling Dawa Party, the Supreme Islamic Council and the Badr Organization.

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