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US Embassy in Iraq attacked with rockets

The Embassy of the United States in Baghdad, Iraq. (United States Department of State, Wikimedia Commons/Released)
January 13, 2022

Rockets were launched at the Green Zone in Baghdad, Iraq — the site of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad — on Thursday evening.

“The U.S. Embassy compound was attacked this evening by terrorist groups attempting to undermine Iraq’s security, sovereignty and international relations,” the Embassy tweeted. “We have long said that these sorts of reprehensible attacks are an assault not just on diplomatic facilities, but on the sovereignty of Iraq itself.”

Fox News reporter Lucas Tomlinson tweeted, “Video purportedly showing rocket attack on U.S. embassy in Baghdad tonight, U.S. military’s C-RAM engaging.” The video shows U.S. Counter-Rocket Artillery and Mortar (C-RAM) systems firing into the sky while a rocket impacts a short distance away.

Unnamed Iraqi security officials told the Associated Press that at least four rockets were fired at the U.S. Embassy and at least three landed within the embassy perimeter.

Iraqi security forces said rockets also fell in residential areas, resulting in injuries.

“In a cowardly terrorist act, the innocent residents of the Green Zone in Baghdad and the headquarters of the diplomatic missions that the Iraqi security forces are responsible for protecting were attacked by a number of missiles launched from the Dora area south of the capital, which led to the injury of a girl and a woman,” Iraqi security forces said in a translated statement. “One of these missiles landed inside the Elaf school in the same area, and the security forces are now working to ascertain casualties and damage, and we will provide you with the details later.”

BBC correspondent Nafiseh Kohnavard tweeted, “Breaking US embassy’s anti rocket system C-RAM in Baghdad activated a few seconds ago I heard explosions.”

Twitter users posted additional footage of C-RAM systems firing in an effort to intercept the incoming rockets.

“NOW – C-RAM air defense system engaging multiple rockets at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad,” tweeted.

“American C-RAM system tasked with defending the US embassy in Baghdad activated less than an hour ago,” another Twitter user said. “Normal Thursday night.”

The rockets are the latest in a series of attacks targeting U.S. military and diplomatic posts in Iraq in the days surrounding the two-year anniversary of the Jan. 3 U.S. strike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani.

On Jan. 3, the U.S. shot down two explosive-laden “suicide drones” near Camp Victory, a base formerly used by U.S. troops at the Baghdad International Airport. No group claimed responsibility for the attempted drone attacks, but the drone attacks coincided with the two-year anniversary of the U.S. strike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad. Iran has called for revenge against the U.S. and on the wings of one of the downed drones were the words “Leader’s revenge” and “Soleimani’s revenge.” Explosive “suicide drones” have also become increasingly popular among Iran-backed Iraqi paramilitary groups.

U.S. defensive systems shot down two more “suicide drones” the next day, on Jan. 4, near the Ain Al Asad Air Base in Iraq.

On Jan. 5, yet another string of attacks was launched against bases in Iraq and Syria that host U.S. and coalition forces. Green Village, a Syrian Democratic Forces base with a small U.S. and Coalition advisory presence in northeast Syria was targeted with indirect fire rockets. Ain Al-Asad Air Base and the Al-Nasr military camp in Iraq also came under rocket attack that day.

On Jan. 6, U.S. forces shot down another “suicide drone” flying towards Ain Al-Asad Air Base.