Iraqi National Project Statement: Passing of the Popular Mobility Force Law
In another authoritarian measure by the Iraqi government and after immense pressure from the National Alliance, the Iraqi Parliament took a vote on November 26th 2016 and passed the PMF law making the sectarian Popular Mobility Force an integral part of Iraq’s security forces against the will of millions of Iraqis and numerous participants in the political process as well.
This is overwhelming evidence to the world on the depth of the political crisis in Iraq and how external powers can dictate and control the Executive and Legislative branches of the Iraqi government.
This irresponsible action undermines and removes any hopes for the national reconciliation effort put forth by the National Alliance - before it even sees the light of day.
The manipulation and exploitation by the National Alliance of their slim majority in the parliament and using it to pass this law at a very turbulent time while sensitivities and mistrusts between all components of Iraq are at an all-time high is appalling to say the least.
The passing of the law was conducted with a slim margin and the absence of 167 Parliament members. This indicates lack of credibility, goodwill and greatly enhances the level of mistrust, suspicions and the deceptive nature of the Iraqi political process.
As a result, there will be polarization of power with one Iraqi component that opens the door for future abuses against all other Iraqi components. This new structure is very similar to how the Iranian Revolutionary Guards are structured in Iran.
So unfortunately as a result Iraqis now get legitimization of a sectarian Force with a bad record of human rights violations instead of what should be done which is the Iraqi government working towards rebuilding the Iraqi Army and security forces into a professional and independent institution with nationalistic objectives, far from sectarianism or foreign influence.
The founders and supporters of this law fail to understand that they have destroyed the basic structure of civil society and are guiding Iraq towards a very grim future, one where all Iraqis will be the victims.
This law leads to the militarization of Iraq, which is the last thing Iraqis want after years of wars, terrorism, death and destruction. This force will be a major burden on Iraq’s finances even after ISIS is removed and the Iraqi per capita will suffer as a result as well.
The proper way to handle the masses in this PMF Force is to dismantle it and induct its members in Iraq's civil society to help rebuild the country after years of destruction.
The flawed strategy of the Iraqi government is further proof of how large the gap is between the Government and the will of the people.
We at the Iraqi National Project consider this law as a major regression and blow to the people of Iraq on a massive scale! We will do our utmost to raise awareness of the severe ramifications and negative consequences that will follow.
We hope that with enough pressure and with the help of the international community, the Iraqi parliament will reconsider what they have done and take a vote to cancel this. Such an important step will pave the way for a real National reconciliation effort otherwise there is no hope for reconciliation.

Sheikh Jamal Al-Dhari
President of the Iraqi National Project
November 27, 2016