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VIDEO: Top Iraq militia leader fought for Tehran during Iraq-Iran war

Hadi al-Ameri is shown in a video dating back to the late 1980s, boasting of fending off Iraqi army as he pledges alliance to Iran's Khomeini
Iraqi militia commander Hadi al-Ameri (R) in the Al-Alam area, on 22 March 2015 (AFP)

A video circulating on Iraqi media outlets purportedly shows the head of Iraq's most powerful militia boasting of battles on behalf of Iranian forces against the Iraqi army during the first Gulf war.

In the video, which appears to be filmed by Iranian TV in the late 1980s, Hadi al-Ameri said that his forces had managed to deal fatal strikes against "the enemy," in a reference to the Iraqi army under executed President Saddam Hussein.

Ameri then added that his forces managed to stop the "mad" Iraqi advance, which he said was backed by "the hypocrites," in a reference to the Iraqi-based Iranian opposition militia People's Mojahedin of Iran (MEK).

"We are with the imam (the late Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini) until the last drop of blood. If the imam says war then (it shall be) war, if the imam says truce then (it shall be) truce," he said.

"We are with the imam. He (Khomeini) is now the imam who represents Islam."  

Iraq and Iran were at war from 1980 until 1988.

Ameri is currently in charge of the Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU), a combination of militias fighting against the Islamic State militant (IS) group.

But prior to formation of the PMU in the summer of 2014, Ameri was the chief of the Iran-backed Badr Organisation, previously known as the Badr Brigades, the armed wing of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI).

He was also the minister of transportation during the government of former premier Nouri al-Maliki.
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