PM Abadi expresses surprises at Tillerson demand that Iranian-backed militias leave Iraq

Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz (centre) attends a meeting of the Saudi-Iraqi Bilateral Coordination Council with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (right) and Iraqi Prime minister Haider al-Abadi, in the Saudi capital Riyadh on Oct 22, 2017.
Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz (centre) attends a meeting of the Saudi-Iraqi Bilateral Coordination Council with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (right) and Iraqi Prime minister Haider al-Abadi, in the Saudi capital Riyadh on Oct 22, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

BAGHDAD (REUTERS) - Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's media office expressed surprise on Monday (Oct 23) at comments by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson regarding Iranian-backed Iraqi Popular Mobilisation paramilitary units.

Mr Tillerson said on Sunday it was time for Iranian-backed militias and their Iranian advisers, who helped Iraq defeat Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), to "go home".

"No party has the right to interfere in Iraqi matters," Mr Abadi's media office said in a statement citing a source close to the prime minister.