Iraqi Consulate in Detroit to Open Memorial Event for Qasem Soleimani

Zachary Evans

The Consulate General of Iraq in Detroit will open a memorial event for slain Iranian general Qasem Soleimani, the consulate announced Monday on its Facebook page.

“The Consulate General of the republic of Iraq in Detroit announces the opening of a register of condolences to the lives of the martyrs who have fallen as a result of the recent American raids in Iraq,” the post reads. The event will take place on January 7 and 8 and is open to the public.

Soleimani, the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard’s elite Quds Force, was killed Thursday in a U.S. precision airstrike at Baghdad International Airport ordered by President Trump. The commander was the architect of Iranian war strategy in Syria, and is considered by U.S. officials to be responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American soldiers in Iraq following the 2003 invasion.

The “register of condolences” is also intended for Abu Mahdi Al-Mohandis, leader of the Kataib Hezbollah militia group. The group, which is distinct from Lebanon’s Hezbollah, killed an American civilian contractor in Iraq on December 29. Al-Mohandis also attended the riots outside of the U.S. embassy in Baghdad that preceded the air strike.

The consulate sits in Michigan’s 14th congressional district. District Representative Barbara Lawrence, a Democrat, had no immediate comment on the issue. The event has, however, caught the eye of the FBI.

“We are aware of events scheduled – both locally and nationally – in response to recent overseas incidents,” Special Agent Mara R. Schneider told the Detroit Free Press. “While there is no specific and credible threat to this area at this time, we urge the public to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to law enforcement.”

Michigan Rising Action, the local arm of the Republican America Rising PAC, called on Michigan Democrats to denounce the event in a statement.

“Soleimani is a known terrorist with the blood of many Americans on his hands. We call on Rep. Tlaib, Sen. Peters, Rep. Slotkin, Rep. Dingell, Rep. Lawrence, and Rep. Stevens to immediately denounce this action being taken by the Iraqi Consulate in Detroit,” Tori Sachs, executive director of Michigan Rising Action, said in part.

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