US Embassy to Shut Down

Sep 29, 2020

On 27 September 2020, U.S. officials reportedly informed the Iraqi government that the U.S. will shut down its embassy in the capital Baghdad and relocate personnel to the consulate in Erbil unless the Iraqi government takes more steps to prevent Iran-linked attacks on U.S. personnel and facilities in Baghdad. Iran-linked militant groups routinely conduct rocket attacks targeting the International Zone in Baghdad (where the U.S. Embassy is located) as well as roadside bomb attacks on convoys carrying supplies for U.S. troops.

Analyst Comment: The proposed closure of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad appears be a retaliatory measure for the inaction of the Iraqi government against Iran-linked militias, as there are no indications that the threat to U.S. diplomatic personnel in Baghdad has recently increased. That being said, organizations with assets and personnel in Iraq should monitor the situation closely and U.S. nationals in particular should keep as low a profile as possible

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