US Ain al-Asad base targeted with Katyusha rockets
03 Mars, 2021, 13:30 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
BAGHDAD-At least 10 rockets targeted a military base in western Iraq that hosts US -led coalition troops on Wednesday, the coalition and the Iraqi military said.
Shafaq News also quoted a security official as confirming the news and reporting that the United States coalition base in Ain al-Asad was targeted by four Katyusha rockets. Marotto did not say whether there were any casualties.
The Iraqi military released a statement saying the attack did not cause significant losses and that security forces had found the launch pad used for the rockets.
Wednesday's attack comes two days before Pope Francis' is scheduled to visit Iraq in a much-anticipated trip that will include Baghdad, southern Iraq and in the northern city of Irbil.
It also came after President Joe Biden ordered a USA airstrike in Syria, in response to a series of rocket attacks on American and coalition troops in Iraq. Washington has blamed these on Shiite militias attempting to pressure the USA into withdrawing from the country.
On Feb. 16 a rocket attack on US -led forces in northern Iraq killed a civilian contractor and injured a USA service member.
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It stoked fears of a possible repeat of a series of tit-for-tat attacks that escalated past year, culminating in the US-directed strike that killed Iranian General Qassim Soleimani outside the Baghdad airport.
Attacks in Iraq had become rare until 2018, when the Trump administration withdrew from an Obama-era nuclear agreement and imposed sanctions to pressure Tehran into renegotiating it.
Western security sources told AFP that the rockets were Iranian-made Arash models, which are 122mm artillery rockets and heavier than those seen in other attacks on Western targets in Iraq.
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