Hawzah News Agency (Najaf , Iraq) - During a meeting with the special representative for Iraq and head of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaer, in the holy shrine city of Najaf on Wednesday, Ayatollah Sistani said Iraq rejects serving as a launching pad to harm any other country.
He noted that Iraq aspires to have good and balanced relations with all neighboring countries, without interference in their internal affairs.
It comes after Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi strongly condemned latest remarks by Trump that American forces must remain in Iraq so Washington can keep a close eye on neighboring Iran, stressing that his country will not accept being used for any acts of aggression against other states.
"There are no US military bases in Iraq; but there are indeed trainers operating within the framework of the international coalition. We disagree with the American side and reject such a standpoint," Abdul-Mahdi told reporters on Tuesday.
"I will not allow Iraq to be used by any country against another. Iraq should not be a party to any battle between two states," he added.
On Monday, Iraqi President Barham Salih hit back at Trump's comments, saying, "The Iraqi constitution rejects the use of Iraq as a base for hitting or attacking a neighboring country."
He stated that Trump did not ask Iraq's permission for US troops stationed there to "watch Iran", noting "US forces were in the country legally under an agreement between the two countries, but that any action taken outside this framework is unacceptable."
"Don't overburden Iraq with your own issues. The US is a major power...but do not pursue your own policy priorities, we live here," Salih pointed out.
"It is of fundamental interest for Iraq to have good relations with Iran" and other neighboring countries, he stressed.