Husayn Falih Aziz al-Lami

Husayn Falih Aziz al-Lami is a high ranking commander within Kata'ib Hezbollah (KH), an Iranian supported Shiite militia located in Iraq. Furthermore, he is the current head of the Popular Mobilization Force's (PMF) Central Security Directorate (CSD), a unit accused of playing a major role in attacks on Iraqi anti-government demonstrators from October of 2019 through January of 2020.



Biography

Early Life


Husayn Falih Aziz al-Lami was born in Baghdad, Iraq in 1969. The Intelligence Ledger has been unable to ascertain verifiable information about al-Lami's younger years.


Kata'ib Hezbollah


As previously mentioned, al-Lami is a high-ranking commander in Kata'ib Hezbollah, the foremost non-state actor in Iraq. In fact, several Iraqi analysts believed that prior to Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis' death in January of 2020, al-Lami was one option to replace him as leader of the entire organization. Realities on the ground and a lack of support from the rank and file forced Aziz to shelve such hopes and pledge his support Ahmad al-Hamidawi, the current leader of KH.

Popular Mobilization Force


Husayn Falih Aziz al-Lami is the commander of the PMF's Central Security Directorate, the civil order and internal affairs branch of the entire organization. While in this position, al-Lami has carried out several acts detrimental to Iraqi and American interests in the region.


In 2017, al-Lami was accused of overseeing a PMF-run detention facility in Dujail, Iraq where Sunni civilians and IS fighters have been tortured and killed in large numbers.


In October of 2019, al-Lami oversaw a brutal crackdown on anti-government protestors in several Iraqi cities, including Baghdad. The United States believes he directly ordered KH and PMF marksmen to take positions on high buildings in these metropolises and instructed them to open fire on unarmed civilians. By the end of the civil unrest in January 2020, nearly 600 non-combatants had been killed and thousands more injured as a result of the PMF's heavy handed tactics. Due to his actions during this time, the US Department of the Treasury designated Husayn Falih ‘Aziz al-Lami as a foreign person who is responsible for, is complicit in, or has directly or indirectly engaged in serious human rights abuse under authority granted the DOT by Executive Order 13818.


Al-Lami has also maintained contacts with individuals diametrically opposed to US interests, including Qasem Soleimani, an Iranian major general in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps that had a direct role in the deaths of coalition troops. He also previously communicated with Muqtada al-Sadr, an Iraqi Shia cleric that has repeatedly given aid and comfort to known terrorists.