Single rocket hits near Iraqi air base hosting US troops

Single rocket hits near Iraqi air base hosting US troops
Ain Al-Asad air base in western Iraq. A single rocket struck near the base that hosts U.S. troops on Monday without causing any injuries. (AFP)
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Updated 24 May 2021

Single rocket hits near Iraqi air base hosting US troops

Single rocket hits near Iraqi air base hosting US troops
  • Rocket struck near Ain al-Asad air base at 1:35 p.m., Col. Wayne Marotto tweeted
  • Attacks against U.S. installations have been frequent since a Washington-directed strike against Qassim Soleimani outside Baghdad airport last year

BAGHDAD: A single rocket struck close to a military base hosting US troops in western Iraq on Monday without causing any injuries, a spokesman for the US-led coalition said.
The rocket struck near Ain Al-Asad air base, a sprawling complex in Anbar province, at 1:35 p.m., Col. Wayne Marotto said on Twitter.
He said damages were being assessed and an investigation was launched.
An Iraqi security official said the rocket struck close to a village outside the base. The official spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations.
Rocket and missile attacks against US installations have been frequent since a Washington-directed strike against top Iranian general Qassim Soleimani outside Baghdad airport last year. That operation also killed powerful Iraqi militia leader Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis. The attacks have continued since US President Joe Biden assumed office this year.
No one claimed responsibility for Monday’s attack, but US officials have previously blamed Iran-backed Iraqi militia groups for assaults against the US Embassy in Baghdad and other military bases hosting American forces.
Recent attacks have been more sophisticated with the use of drones. Earlier this month, a drone targeted Ain Al-Asad base causing minor damage.
The killing of Soleimani on Iraqi soil sparked the anger of mostly Shiite lawmakers who passed a non-binding resolution calling for the ousting of US forces from the country.
The future of the US’s military presence in Iraq has been the focus of strategic talks between Baghdad and Washington, with Shiite militia groups insisting on a timeline for withdrawal.