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SEPTEMBER 2020

U.S. Blames Iran For Rocket Attack On Its Base In Iraq

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U.S. Blames Iran For Rocket Attack On Its Base In Iraq

A US soldier runs at a coalition forces forward base near West Mosul, Iraq June 21, 2017 (photo credit: REUTERS)

The US State Deparment has in fact blamed Iran for a recent rocket attack on a US military base in Iraq.

“Iran may have been behind Thursday’s attack on Iraq’s Balad air base, a senior U.S. State Department official said on Friday, but added that Washington was awaiting further evidence.

Iraqi military on Thursday said that two Katyusha rockets landed inside Balad air base, which hosts U.S. forces and contractors and is located about 50 miles (80 kilometers) north of Baghdad.

No casualties or damages were reported in the attack for which there was no immediate claim of responsibility.

“We’re waiting for full evidence, but if past is prologue then there’s a good chance that Iran was behind it,” David Schenker, Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs, told reporters in a briefing.” Reuters reported.

The December 6 incident followed another one, which took place on December 4. Then, five rockets landed on Ain Al-Asad air base, which hosts U.S. forces in Anbar province in western Iraq. No casualties were reported.

Schenker claimed that increasing attacks something of “great concern”. He also accused Iran of becoming more aggressive over the past five to six months.

“The Iranians often times, or have certainly in the past, taken aggressive action when they feel under pressure,” he said.

Mainstream media outlets speculate that the recent rocket attacks on US facilities in Iraq were carried out by Kataib Hezbollah, the Iraqi paramilitary group that is believed to be backed by Iran. Kataib Hezbollah participated in the war on ISIS in Iraq and Syria and supported the Assad government in its fight against al-Qaeda.

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