Baghdad – (IraqiNews.com) A Syrian parliamentarian on Saturday said the parliament welcomes the participation of Iraqi al-Hashed al-Shaabi militias into battles against Islamic State militants in Syria, days after several leaders of the mostly-Shia militia said they would take the battle against the extremist group beyond Iraqi borders.
“The Syrian People’s Council welcomes any decision from President Bashar al-Assad regarding the entry of al-Hashed al-Shaabi to the country’s territories to join military forces in the liberation operations against the criminal groups existing there,” said Mahmoud Bokhadjar, a parliament member.
“Engaging al-Hashed al-Shaabi on the Syrian soils will help win the battle faster and preserve stability at both countries after securing the common borders,” said Bokhadjar.
His statements came days after several senior figures within al-Hashed al-Shaabi said that after clearing Iraq from ISIS, the militia would proceed to join battles against the extremist group in Syria.
Last week, Hadi al-Ameri, secretary general of Badr Organization, one of the militias operating under al-Hashed al-Shaabi, said the militia’s leaderships had “received an invitation from President Bashar al-Assad to enter Syria after Iraq is liberated.”
Assad’s ruling clique mostly belongs to the Shia Alawite sect, and has already enjoyed combat support from Lebanese Shia militia Hezbollah and Iran.
Al-Hashed al-Shaabi has been actively fighting ISIS side by side with Iraqi security forces, claiming consecutive victories over the group in Nineveh, the stage of current decisive battles launched mid October. Nineveh’s Mosul is ISIS’s last stronghold in Iraq. Iraqi commanders on the field and observers believe the group has no escape but to the Syrian city of Raqqa, also a major stronghold for the group.