ERBIL — A hardliner group within the Iranian-backed Hashd al-Shaabi has threatened to target the US forces in Iraq if they refuse to leave the country.
"We are serious about getting the Americans out, using the force of arms because the Americans don't understand any other language," Jaafar al-Husseini, a spokesperson for the Kataib Hezbollah, told Beirut-based al-Mayadeen TV.
The militia group previously several times made similar threats against the US troops in Iraq, calling them occupation forces on the soil of Iraq.
It is known for close links to Iran's Revolutionary Guards Corps.
The threatening comes as media reports said earlier that Washington and Baghdad are coordinating for the withdrawal of at least 60% of the US military forces from Iraq to Afghanistan.
Government spokesperson Saa’d al-Hadithi confirmed the reports on Monday.
The Badr Brigade, another powerful militia group operating within the Hashd al-Shaabi, said that the extension of US military presence in Iraq would cause further instability in the region.
"The two governments should coordinate to ensure a full withdrawal. U.S. presence will be the cause for internal polarization and a magnet for terrorists," Badr spokesman Kareem Nuri said.