The American military has confirmed, in a released statement, that a rocket attack on an Iraqi base, where U.S. and coalition troops are based, has killed an American and a British soldier and an American contractor.
The three men were killed on Camp Taji base as 18 Katyusha rockets slammed into the base on Wednesday at 1935 hours local time. Camp Taji hosts U.S. and coalition personnel for training and advising missions.
Their names will not be released pending notification of next of kin.
At least 12 personnel were wounded during the attack, the statement added.
“The Coalition confirms more than 15 small rockets impacted Iraq’s Camp Taji base hosting Coalition troops, March 11 at 7:35 p.m. (Iraq Time),” said Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR) spokesperson Col. Myles Caggins said on Twitter.
Photo of rocket truck reported having attacked U.S. base: Iraqi Security Forces on Twitter
Captain William Urban, U.S. Central Command spokesman, also confirmed the above.
“Approximately 12 additional personnel were wounded during the attack. The attack is under investigation by the Coalition and Iraqi Security Forces,” he added.
Iraqi Security Forces found a rocket-rigged truck a few miles from Camp Taji, south of the Rashidiya area. Three of the missiles where unfired according to reports and photos posted on Twitter.
No one has claimed responsibility for the attack. An earlier attack in January was attributed to Iranian-led militias in Iraq. The attack is under investigation by the Coalition and Iraqi Security Forces, U.S. Central Command said.
There are 5,000 U.S. and hundreds of coalition forces operating against ISIS in Iraq. Included in that are 400 soldiers from the U.K. who work closely with the Americans.
The U.K. Ministry of Defense released a statement that said, “We can confirm we are aware of an incident involving U.K. service personnel at Camp Taji, Iraq. An investigation is underway, it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time.”
The missile attack comes just a few days after two Marine Raiders were killed by enemy forces while accompanying Iraqi Special Forces during a mission to eliminate an ISIS stronghold in a tunnel complex in the Qarachogh mountain region of northern Iraq.
This rocket attack was the 22nd, against bases where U.S. forces are based, since October.
This is a developing story. More details will be added as they become available.
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