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article imageFour Iraqi servicemen wounded in rocket attack at Balad Air Base

By Karen Graham     Jan 12, 2020 in World
Tikrit - Four members of Iraq's military were wounded Sunday in a rocket attack targeting an airbase 80 kilometers (50 miles) north of Baghdad that often hosts American troops, Iraqi security officials said.
The rocket attack came just days after Iran fired ballistic missiles at two bases in Iraq that house U.S. forces. The Iraqi military said in a statement that eight Katyusha rockets had been fired at the base north of the capital Baghdad and that the four wounded included two officers, according to Reuters.
No group has claimed responsibility for the rocket attack as of this time. According to CBS, one of the rockets fell on a restaurant inside the airbase, the officials said.
Balad Air Base hosts foreign contractors and US troops, CNN reports. Al Jazeera notes that the base also hosts US trainers, advisers, and a company that maintains F-16 aircraft, however, most of the U.S. airmen had left the base before the attack.
This information is based on what a coalition spokesman has said. According to CBS, "A defense official said American experts, trainers, and advisers had been at the base. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to media."
The U.S. and Iran recently stepped back from escalating tensions following the killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, Iran’s top general, in a U.S. airstrike in Baghdad. A senior Iraqi leader of an Iran-backed militia was also killed.
This latest rocket attack did increase security concerns for US entities in the region because Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has said that a "harsh retaliation is waiting" for Americans, reports Business Insider.
More about Iraq, Rocket attack, Balad Air Base, Us military, Tensions between US and Iran
 
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