Araji laughed off questions about lingering hostility toward U.S. forces.
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Just over 10 years ago, Qasim al-Araji was being arrested a second time by American forces in Iraq. The charges were serious: smuggling arms used to attack U.S. troops and involvement in an assassination cell at the height of sectarian violence that engulfed Iraq following the 2003 toppling of Saddam Hussein. Now, he heads of one of Iraq's most powerful ministries.With credentials that include training from Iranian special operators known as the Al-Quds Force and time spent as a guerrilla and militia commander, Iraq's Interior Minister Araji is now trumpeting his respect for human rights and support for the U.S.-led coalition in the fight against Daesh (ISIS). Back in 2007, Araji was held by the United States for 23 months. Araji's office confirmed that he met with the U.S. ambassador to Iraq within days of taking office to express his support for the U.S. role in the fight against Daesh and to request additional support for his ministry and forces.
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