The head of the Popular Mobilization Authority in Iraq, Faleh al-Fayyad, announced on Monday, September 13, 2021, the return of 30,000 members of the Popular Mobilization Forces whose contracts had been terminated in recent years, and the decision came after a wave of continuous protests in front of the fortified Green Zone and the crowd headquarters in central Baghdad.
This decision comes just a month before the early parliamentary elections, scheduled for October 10, according to Agence France-Presse.
Al-Fayyad said in a press conference: “Today we were able to reach this point and agree to absorb 30,000 of those whose contracts have been terminated,” explaining that the funding for this would be “from the authority’s own resources and not a penny from outside the authority’s budget.”
In turn, Ahmed Al-Asadi, a spokesman for the Al-Fateh Alliance, the political wing of the factions affiliated with the Popular Mobilization, said: “Today, the Ministry of Finance agreed to transfer the funds allocated to return 30,000 members of the Popular Mobilization.”
The contracts of the majority of these elements were terminated between 2015 and 2018 for various reasons, including absenteeism and non-compliance with working hours.
The PMF factions are linked to parties loyal to Iran, and they are running in the elections for the second time after their leaders became involved in political work.
The Popular Mobilization was formed in 2014, following a fatwa issued by Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, after the “Islamic State” organization invaded a third of Iraq’s territory, and the army sectors collapsed.
The basic building block for the crowd was armed Shiite factions that fought the American forces, and played a key role in the victory over ISIS.
At the end of 2016, Parliament passed a law regulating the work of the PMF, and it became an official military force under the command of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, the Prime Minister, but observers believe that the PMF has increased its influence on a large scale and has become stronger than other state institutions and its leaders are not subject to government orders, but rather To its leaders close to Iran
The mobilization forces have now become centers of economic power in all state institutions and an effective tool in the hands of the political system. When the popular protests against the government erupted in October 2019, those armed groups backed by Iran were able to suppress them with lethal force, in addition to that many human rights groups These groups were accused of widespread abuses.