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Rockets hit US embassy in Baghdad amid Israel-Hamas conflict

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Rockets hit US embassy in Baghdad amid Israel-Hamas conflict

Rockets targeted the US embassy in Baghdad’s Green Zone on Friday, marking the latest in a series of attacks against American and coalition forces in Iraq and Syria amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

The embassy reported that “two salvoes of rockets” were fired at the compound at around 4:15 am (0115 GMT).

“A multi-rocket attack was launched at US and Coalition forces in the vicinity of Union III and the Baghdad embassy complex” without causing any reported casualties or damage, a US official stated.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

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The United States leads an international coalition battling jihadists in Iraq and neighboring Syria, with its forces facing repeated attacks in recent weeks.

These attacks unfold against the backdrop of the more than two-month-long war between US ally Israel and the Iran-backed Palestinian Islamist militant group Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

In a statement, the US embassy reported that “two salvoes of rockets” were fired at the mission compound at around 4:15 am (0115 GMT).

“Indications are the attacks were initiated by Iran-aligned militias,” said a US spokesperson.

The spokesperson called on Iraq’s government to protect diplomats, coalition partners, and facilities, adding: “We reiterate that we reserve the right to self-defense and to protect our personnel anywhere in the world.”

Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani warned that attacks on embassies undermine the country’s security and called on security forces to bring those responsible to justice.

Since mid-October, there have been dozens of rocket or drone strikes by pro-Iran groups against US or coalition forces in Iraq as well as in Syria.

However, Friday’s rocket attack was the first against the US embassy in Baghdad since the Israel-Hamas conflict began on October 7, raising regional tensions and fears of a wider conflict.

An Iraqi security official stated, “Three Katyusha rockets targeting the American embassy fell close to the Green Zone,” near the river Tigris.

There are approximately 2,500 US troops in Iraq and about 900 in Syria as part of efforts to prevent a resurgence of the Islamic State group.

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