The Iraqi base that houses American and Coalition troops in Taji was rocked with another rocket attack on Saturday morning. Just three days ago, on Wednesday, another attack at the same base killed two Americans and a British soldier at Taji.
Three coalition troops and two Iraqis were wounded in the rocket attack, Coalition spokesperson Colonel Myles Caggins said on Twitter. Joint Operations Command reported the “critical injuries” of “a number” of Iraqi troops adding that the wounded were part of the Air Force. The nationalities of the wounded coalition soldiers, on the other hand, were not released.
The U.S.-led coalition said that at least 25 107mm rockets struck Camp Taji just before 11 a.m. Iraqi sources put the number of rockets at 33. Some struck the area where coalition forces are based, while others fell on air defense units, an Iraqi military statement said.
Iraqi security forces quickly discovered seven platforms from which the rockets were fired, north of Baghdad in the Abu Azam area. There were an additional 24 missiles on the site and ready to launch. But the attackers fled before launching them. Similarly to what transpired in the attack of three days ago, some of the missiles were still in the launchers but failed to fire. They were disarmed by Iraqi personnel.
The rocket system preferred by the terrorists.
This attack, unlike previous ones on the bases housing coalition troops, occurred during the daytime. The investigators will determine whether the attackers were seen while setting up.
On Friday the U.S. targeted with airstrikes arms depots belonging to Kata’ib Hizbollah, an Iranian-led militia that falls under the umbrella of the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), which Washington has blamed for the rocket attacks. U.S. Air Force airstrikes destroyed five weapon storage sites housing 107 mm Katyusha rockets, the same rockets used in the attacks of Wednesday and Saturday.
The commander of U.S. Central Command, General Kenneth “Frank” McKenzie, said that Kata’ib Hizbollah was responsible for the attack on Wednesday night as well as for at least 11 other attacks on U.S. forces in Iraq over the past six months.
American bases have been hit 21 times with rocket and mortar fire, but the Iraqi Foreign Ministry summoned the American and British ambassadors over this act of “American Aggression” which they said killed and wounded Iraqis.
On Saturday, Iraq admonished the U.S. not to respond. It said that it will take “all measures to prosecute and arrest those who carried out this act of aggression.”
“We also refuse that American forces or others take any action without the approval of the Iraqi government and the commander-in-chief of the armed forces,” the Iraqi statement added.
The Foreign Ministry, however, did not address the Iranian-led militias who vowed revenge for Friday’s airstrikes and have repeatedly stated that they will continue to attack United States and coalition troops until they all withdraw from Iraq.
The article will be updated as information is released.
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