The commander of special units of Iran’s internal security forces, Brigadier-General Hassan Karami, announced the dispatch of a 7,500-strong force to Iraq, claiming that it is to protect the “Forty Hussein ceremony,” amid accusations from Iraqi protesters of the Revolutionary Guards and his militias to intervene to suppress and kill protesters.
“More than 10,000 special forces personnel are directly responsible for protecting the 40 ceremonies,” Carmi, whose forces are responsible for countering protests in Iran, said in an interview with the state-run Mehr news agency on Monday.
He added: “7,500 of them are directly located, and there are 4000 reserve elements.”
The commander of the Iranian special forces that 30 thousand policemen are involved in the protection of marches stretching from Iran to Iraq to protect the “marches of forty Hussein.”
“The most difficult part to be protected by Iranian special forces is overcrowding 10 to 15 kilometers from the border,” he said.
“We are doing very strong intelligence work, and we have elements in the crowds to control the situation,” Carmi said.
Special units in Iran are responsible for dealing with popular protests as they participated strongly in the December 2017 protests that lasted until January 2018 in more than 100 Iranian cities.
Karmi acknowledged that his forces intervened in controlling those protests at 79 points.“We did not use violence.
Meanwhile, 30 demonstrators were killed by Iranian security forces during the demonstrations. More than 5,000 people were arrested, 50 of whom died under torture.
Observers say that the transfer of thousands of elements to Iraq under the pretext of “protecting the ceremony of forty Hussein,” comes in order to benefit from the experience of these forces in order to control the popular protests in Iraq.
The presence of these forces in Iraqi cities comes at a time when some Iraqi protesters accused the Revolutionary Guard and its militias in Iraq of interfering in the suppression of protests.
The Iranian leader, Ali Khamenei, described the protests in Iraq, in his first comment on Monday, as a “conspiracy of enemies”, saying it “aims to differentiate between Iran and Iraq.”
The Iranian military and security moves and the condemnation of the Iraqi demonstrators who went out against corruption and lack of services and the deterioration of living conditions, while protesters in the streets of Iraqi cities chanted “Iran Libra Libra .. Baghdad remains free” as the most prominent slogans echoed in the demonstrations against the Iraqi government Several cities in the country since last Tuesday.
The slogans condemning Iran came after years of Iranian interference in the Iraqi affairs, which led to the deterioration of the social, security and economic conditions in the country.
The death toll in the protests in Iraq has risen to more than 104 since the outbreak of the protests, mostly demonstrators, and wounded more than 4,000 others.
Throughout the days of the ongoing Iraqi protests, Iranian regime officials tried to distort popular protests, and Iran’s state media routinely described them as “riots,” and attempted to link them with external political, security and media outlets.