Amman: Iraq’s prime minister and an influential Shiite cleric have visited Jordan, just hours after US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson urged Iraq and Saudi Arabia to unite to counter growing Iranian assertiveness.
Saudi Arabia is concerned about the influence of its rival Iran in Iraq. Iran has backed Shiite militias fighting against Daesh in Iraq.
Late Sunday, the office of influential Iraqi Shiite cleric Muqtada Al Sadr announced that he met with Jordan’s Prince Ghazi in the kingdom.
Al Sadr has in the past called for Shiite militias in Iraq to disband.
Meanwhile, Jordan’s King Abdullah II held talks late Sunday with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al Abadi.
Al Abadi met with Tillerson earlier Sunday in Saudi Arabia. His media office later criticised Tillerson’s comments regarding Iranian-backed Iraqi Popular Mobilisation paramilitary units.
“No party has the right to interfere in Iraqi matters,” a source close to Al Abadi said.
Tillerson said on Sunday it was time for Iranian-backed militias and their Iranian advisers who helped Iraq defeat Daesh to “go home”.