Rocket Lands Less Than Half a Mile from US Embassy in Deadly Middle Eastern Attack



Rockets struck Iraq’s capital on Tuesday with four landing inside the heavily fortified Green Zone, Iraq’s military said, killing a child and wounding at least five people, signaling an end to an informal truce announced by Iran-backed militias in October.

Two Iraqi security officials said one of the rockets that hit the Green Zone hit close to Iraq’s National Security Service, just 2,000 feet from the American Embassy.

Some of the rockets were intercepted by an air defense system installed by the U.S. earlier this year, they said.

Iraq’s military said three rockets also landed outside the Green Zone, one close to a hospital, one at the gate of a public park, and a third exploded in the air.

One child was killed and five civilians were wounded, a military statement said.

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Officials said two Iraqi security forces personnel were also wounded inside the Green Zone. There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

The military said the incident would not go without “prosecution and accountability.”

The attack comes after a recent announcement by the Pentagon that it would reduce troop levels in Iraq from 3,000 to 2,500.

In mid-October, Iran-backed, mostly Shiite militia groups said they would temporarily halt attacks targeting the American presence in Iraq, including the embassy.

That came with the condition that U.S.-led coalition troops withdraw from the country in line with a non-binding resolution passed in the Iraqi Parliament in January.

The resolution was passed by mostly Shiite lawmakers and urged the government to take action and expel U.S.-led coalition troops from the country.

The resolution followed the Washington-directed airstrike that killed top Iranian Gen. Qassim Soleimani and powerful Iraqi militia leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.

A planned American withdrawal has been underway in Iraq for months, with coalition troops withdrawing from several Iraqi bases.

Iraqi forces have increasingly been conducting anti-Islamic State operations without U.S. assistance.

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