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Iran Proxies Escalating? Overnight Rocket Attack Hits US Embassy Compound In Baghdad

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Iran Proxies Escalating? Overnight Rocket Attack Hits US Embassy Compound In Baghdad

Several rockets were fired at Baghdad’s fortified Green Zone overnight, and landed near the sprawling US embassy in Iraq, according to defense officials cited in international reports, in the second such attack since May.

At least two Katyusha rockets landed near the embassy shortly before midnight, according to the AFP, which further cited a security source which described, “One hit about three metres [10 feet] inside a gate on the embassy compound.”

During the attack “several rockets” had been reported, which appeared clearly intent on hitting the American compound, though there were no casualties or significant damage as a result. 

The US embassy compound in Baghdad’s Green Zone, via AFP.

Over the past months occasional rocket attacks on or near the embassy compound have underscored soaring tensions between US coalition forces and pro-Iran Iraqi Shia paramilitary groups (Popular Mobilization Forces, or PMF). This after US forces have been accused of turning a blind eye following a series of alleged Israeli airstrikes on ‘Iran-backed’ bases in Iraq. 

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the rocket attack, but US officials have pointed the finger at militants backed by Iran after previous similar events, especially given broader regional tensions wherein Iran has claimed itself capable of striking any regional US base or aircraft carrier. The IRGC has lately vowed that any US military action against Iran, even if “limited” retaliation for the Aramco attacks, would result in “all-out war” — with American troops and assets in the region the first in the cross hairs

The US coalition in Iraq issued a statement Tuesday saying it “would not tolerate” any attacks on the fortified Green Zone – an area which houses western diplomatic buildings and international institutions. 

Scene after a previous rocket attack near the Green Zone in Baghdad, via Al Jazeera.

The overnight Monday attack also comes as the UK, France and Germany joined the United States in condemning Iran for the Sept. 14 twin aerial strikes on Saudi Aramco facilities.

Currently there’s also a movement gaining ground in Iraq’s parliament to expel the American ‘anti-ISIL’ coalition from the country, given the Islamic State’s recent demise as well as controversial attacks on weapons depots widely blamed on Israel. 

Tyler Durden

Tue, 09/24/2019 – 17:25

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