Iraq Situation Report: Mach 25 - 31, 2020
Apr 3, 2020 - Katherine Lawlor, Brandon Wallace
ISW is assessing the ongoing unrest and its effects on political-security dynamics in Iraq. The Iraq Situation Report (SITREP) map series summarizes key events and likely developments to come. The following SITREP map covers the period March 25 - 31, 2020.
Key Takeaway: Iran advanced multiple lines of effort in Iraq to compel the U.S. withdrawal from the country. Iran successfully organized political opposition from the most powerful Iraqi Shi’a blocs to deny parliamentary backers to Prime Minister-designate Adnan al-Zurfi. Zurfi, who enjoyed tacit U.S. and international support, is now unlikely to win a vote of confidence. The U.S. completed pre-planned consolidations from three major Iraqi bases and several smaller camps, while several European nations either completely or partially withdrew their forces from Iraq over COVID-19 concerns. Meanwhile, the U.S. deployed Patriot missile defense systems to two large bases where U.S. troops are present in Iraq. The Patriot deployment is necessary force protection for Coalition forces but signals that the Iraqi government will not take meaningful action to hold proxy militias accountable for killing U.S. and Coalition personnel.