Iraqi Shia militia welcomes Russian action against Islamic State, criticises US

Reuters , Monday 5 Oct 2015

One of Iraq's most powerful Shia Muslim militias said on Monday it fully supported Russia's intervention and air strikes against Islamic State in the Middle East and accused the United States of being indecisive in its campaign against the group.

Naim al-Uboudi, a spokesman for Asaib Ahl al-Haq, said Russia's air strikes in Syria had already produced results.

"We know that the United States, during the past year and a half was not serious about putting an end to Daesh," he said, using an Arabic acronym for Islamic State.

Last month, Iraq said its military officials were engaged in intelligence and security cooperation in Baghdad with Russia, Iran and Syria to counter the threat from Islamic State.

"We have tried the United States forces for a long time and saw that they are not serious in battling Daesh, but they attempt to manage the crisis rather than put an end to it," Uboudi said.

The new security pact, and Russian air strikes against opponents of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria, are likely to raise concerns in Washington that Moscow is gaining clout in the Middle East at the expense of American interests.

Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has said Baghdad would welcome Russian air strikes against Islamic State on Iraqi soil and was receiving information from both Syria and Russia on the militant group.

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