Iraq was surprised at the claims made by the UAE which said that Iraq’s paramilitary forces have taken funds from Qatar.
Ahmed Mahjoub, Iraqi foreign minister, questioned the authenticity of the accusations made by the United Arab Emirates Foreign Affairs Minister Anwar Gargash.
“These remarks come as an obstacle at a time when Iraq is seeking to strengthen its ties with the UAE,” Mahjoob said.
“They’re a cause for concern over the possibility of fostering and developing relations,” he was quoted as saying by a Russian news agency.
Anwar Gargash had said that the Popular Mobilisation Forces of receiving financial support from Qatar.
A spokesperson for the Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the Popular Mobilisation Forces was an integral and inseparable part of the national security system and its status as a legitimate organisation has been approved by the Iraqi Parliament.
The official also said that the forces come under the General Command of the Armed Forces.
“It has taken part in destroying the ISIS terrorist group that used to threaten Iraq and the region. The UAE is also a beneficiary of the sacrifices made by Al Hashd and the Iraqi Security Forces to protect the region from this terrorist group,” he said.
Ahmed Saeed Al Rumaihi, head of Qatar’s media office for the foreign ministry, described Gargash’s accusations as ‘baseless’ and made without evidence. The comments were merely ‘promoting lies,’ Rumaihi added.