Funeral procession held for PMF fighters killed in US strike
An Iran-backed paramilitary coalition held a funeral procession in Baghdad on Tuesday morning for four militants killed in a US airstrike on the Syria-Iraq border area.
The procession featuring empty caskets was attended by high-level politicians, as well as former Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi, and guarded by a heavy police presence.
Media for the Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF) said that the fighters killed in the airstrikes were from its Brigade 14, Kataib al-Sayyid al-Shuhada.
At a meeting of the anti-Islamic State coalition, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the strikes were necessary to stop recent drone attacks on sites of US interest in Iraq.
"This action in self-defence... sends a very important and strong message," Blinken told reporters in Rome. "I would hope that the message sent by the strikes... will be heard and deter future action.”
The airstrikes were condemned by major Iraqi political parties, as well as the Iraqi military.
Pro-Iran militias attacked a base in Syria on Monday evening, in apparent retaliation for the US airstrikes.