Iraq militia leader says if U.S. troops stay they will be occupiers

 Iraq militia leader says if U.S. troops stay they will be occupiers

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iran-backed Iraqi militia commander Qais al-Khazali said on Sunday if U.S. troops do not leave Iraq, they would be considered an occupying force.

Khazali was speaking after Iraq's parliament backed a recommendation by the prime minister to end the presence of foreign troops, a response to the U.S. killing of a top Iranian military commander and an Iraqi militia leader in Baghdad.

The U.S. sanctioned Khazali's Asaib Ahl al-Haq group on Friday, saying it was an Iranian proxy.

(Reporting by Maha El Dahan; Editing by Ahmed Aboulenein)

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Updated Date: Jan 06, 2020 06:10:22 IST