Thousands march in large show of Iraqi paramilitary force

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BAGHDAD (AP) — Thousands of members of Iraq’s mostly Shiite militias known as Popular Mobilization Forces have marched in a parade in the largest show of strength since the founding of the controversial paramilitary group. Tanks, boats and ammunition were display in the Saturday parade north of Baghdad. The event was held to mark the seventh anniversary of the PMF, an umbrella group formed after a 2014 call to arms by Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani to defeat the Islamic State group. There has been a standoff recently between the paramilitary force and the government following the arrest of the force’s commander Qassim Musleh last month on terrorism charges.

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