Late on January 4, the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, and its outskirt were the target of at least two rockets attacks carried out by unknown persons.
Reuters said that at least one of the rockets fell near the U.S. embassy in the heavily fortified Green Zone, which houses government buildings and foreign missions. An Iraqi source told the news agency that the attack didn’t result in any casualties.
Four other rockets landed near the southern entrance of Balad Air Base, north of Baghdad, according to the al-Sumaria TV. The results of the attack on the base, which used to host U.S. forces, are yet to be revealed.
“U.S. forces which were deployed inside the base withdrew today’s afternoon,” a source told the Iraqi channel.
A few minutes after the attacks, Shia group Kata’ib Hezbollah (KH) released a short statement, in which it called on Iraqi security forces to stay at least 1,000 m away from U.S. bases starting from January 5 evening.
“Commanders of security services should adhere to the safety rules … Security services shouldn’t turn their fighters into human shields for the American invaders,” Commander of the group’s Special Forces warned in the statement.
The Iraqi government and the U.S.-led coalition have not commented on the rocket attacks, nor on KH’s warning, so far.
Shia groups in Iraq may be on the verge of launching a new insurgency against U.S. troops in response to the recent U.S. strikes on Iraq. The strikes killed several prominent Iraqi and Iranian commanders, including Maj. Gen. Qassim Soleimani.