Reacting to a recent meeting between newly formed Iraqi Islamic Resistance groups, a report on a British trans-regional website described the meeting as “rare” and stressed that Sayyid Muqtada al-Sadr and Shaykh Akram al-Kaabi have now become key figures seeking to shape Iraq’s security contours.
AhlulBayt News Agency (ABNA): Reacting to a recent meeting between newly formed Iraqi Islamic Resistance groups, a report on a British trans-regional website described the meeting as “rare” and stressed that Sayyid Muqtada al-Sadr and Shaykh Akram al-Kaabi have now become key figures seeking to shape Iraq’s security contours.
According to the Communication and Media Affairs Centre of al-Nujaba in Iran, in a report published on the British website Middle East Eye, Egyptian analyst Tamer Badawi named the leader of the Sadrist Movement and the secretary-general of the al-Nujaba Islamic Resistance Movement as the main winners of the Iraqi elections.
Pointing out that the October elections had led to a shift in the balance of power in Iraq, the website wrote, “Sayyid Muqtada al-Sadr, as the leader of the majority that holds the most seats in parliament, and Shaykh Akram al-Kaabi, the leader of an Islamic Resistance movement that, with a distinct approach from its counterparts, has avoided factional divides; There are now two key figures seeking to shape Iraq’s security contours.”
While acknowledging the differences of opinion and different strategies of al-Sadr and al-Kaabi, both of whom are prominent students and heirs of the martyred Ayatollah Sayyid Muhammad Sadiq al-Sadr, the author noted, “Of course, the secretary-general of the al-Nujaba Movement has a noticeable closeness to the leadership of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and defines his movement as transnational; But at the same time, it may lead to short-term and fragile convergence in domestic politics with the Sadrists, who see themselves as a local movement.”
Middle East Eye emphasized that although Akram al-Kaabi, like other commanders of the Iraqi Resistance, does not engage in explicit sabre-rattling against Mustafa al-Kadhimi (the caretaker prime minister), he is hostile to him, and said, “Following the assassinations of [martyrs] Qasem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the secretary-general of al-Nujaba Movement brought together a group of Iraqi Resistance leaders to discuss taking action against the United States. Muqtada al-Sadr was among the attendees.”
In another part of his analytical article, Tamer Badawi states, “al-Kaabi’s approach was to keep the al-Nujaba Movement away from the political margins after the elections; A measure that gave them more capacity to more capacity to plan and mobilize against foreign targets. When other groups condemned al-Kadhimi over allegations of vote-rigging, the al-Nujaba Movement focused on issuing threats against the Turkish military deployed in Iraq’s north.”
The British online news outlet described the release of a video of the recent meeting of the commanders of eight anti-American Resistance groups in Iraq with the secretary-general of the al-Nujaba Movement as an “unusual televised appearance” and wrote, “In December, al-Kaabi could be seen amid the flags of various surrogate groups that have emerged over recent months as offshoots of Resistance factions. The significance of Kaabi linking those surrogates to his group lies in the fact that larger groups such as Kata’ib Hezbollah, a top-tier ally of Iran, and Asaib Ahl al-Haqq never disclosed their relationship with the groups that claimed credit for the deadly attacks on US-led forces in Iraq.”
Middle East Eye described the secretary-general’s remarks during the meeting as “a response to Muqtada al-Sadr’s call for the disarmament of the Resistance groups” and continued, “Implicitly criticized dragging the Resistance factions into the ongoing political discord following Iraq’s elections, Shaykh Akram al-Kaabi warned that this would harm their collective militant capacity to mobilize against the United States.”
At the end of the report, Badawi reiterated the position of the secretary-general of the al-Nujaba Movement as “the point of intersection between the Iraqi Resistance groups and al-Sadr” and noted, “And while al-Kaabi is among the few leaders who continued to seek constructive relations with al-Sadr, his main goal is to enlarge his [jihadi] organization and play a greater role in shaping anti-American actions in Iraq in Iraq and even Syria.”