Iraqi Judge Issues Arrest Warrant for Trump over Soleimani Airstrike

Iraqi Judge Issues Arrest Warrant for Trump over Soleimani Airstrike

A judge in a Baghdad investigative court on Thursday issued an arrest warrant for President Donald Trump for ordering the January 2020 airstrike that killed Iranian terrorist Qassem Soleimani and Iraqi militia chief Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.

Soleimani was the head of the Quds Force, the foreign sabotage division of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). Al-Muhandis was the founder of a Shiite militia group called Kataib Hezbollah (KH) and the deputy chief of the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), the name given to militia groups deputized by the Iraqi government to fight the Islamic State. 

Both the IRGC and KH are designated terrorist organizations. Soleimani and Muhandis were liquidated in a drone strike at the Baghdad airport while planning attacks on American personnel in Iraq, shortly after organizing an illegal assault on the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad and rocket attacks that killed an American civilian defense contractor named Nawres Hamid. Soleimani had a very long history of organizing deadly attacks on Americans in Iraq.

The Associated Press (AP) reported the Iraqi arrest warrant for Trump was for “premeditated murder, which carries the death penalty on conviction.”

“It is unlikely to be carried out but symbolic in the waning days of Trump’s presidency,” the AP added.

The warrant was reportedly issued after the judge “recorded the statements of the claimants from the family of Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.” The AP report did not mention whether any statements from the family of Nawres Hamid were recorded.

Forbesquoted the court declaring that “investigations are continuing in order to unmask the other culprits in this crime, be they Iraqis or foreigners.”

The AP recalled that Iran also issued an arrest warrant for Trump in June 2020 asked Interpol for help serving it. The Iranian judiciary repeated that request Tuesday.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran is very seriously following up on pursuing and punishing those who ordered and executed this crime,” said a spokesman for the Iranian judiciary.

John Hayward