Cairo: Kataeb Hezbollah (Hezbollah Brigades) in Iraq is a militia trained and supported by Iran. Created in 2007 to fight US troops in Iraq, Kataeb Hezbollah is led by Abu Mahdi Al Muhandes, a close ally of Iran and its powerful Revolutionary Guard.
In its ideology, Kataeb Hezbollah defines itself as an Islamic resistance and jihadist movement espousing Islamic principles. The group sees Iran’s clerical governance as the “ideal way” to establish Islamic rule. Kataeb Hezbollah is believed to be also linked to Lebanon’s pro-Iranian Hezbollah movement.
In 2009, the US put Kataeb Hezbollah and Al Muhandes on its terror list and subjected them to financial sections. The militia carried out a series of attacks against US forces in Iraq after the 2003 invasion and until the Americans withdrew from the country in 2011.
The militia was also among the Iran-allied groups that sent militiamen to Syria to fight alongside the Syrian regime of Bashar Al Assad against an armed rebellion.
The US blamed Kataeb Hezbollah for a rocket attack on Friday on a military base in Iraq’s northern region of Kirkuk that killed a US contractor.
Kataeb Hezbollah is currently a faction of Iraq’s influential state-sanctioned militia Al Hashed Al Shaabi (Popular Mobilisation Units) that played a major role in fighting Daesh terrorists in the country.