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Katyusha rocket fired at US base in Baghdad airport: Report

Reports say a Katyusha rocket has been fired at a “US base” inside the Baghdad International Airport.

The projectile fell in the vicinity of the airport on Sunday without either exploding or leaving any human losses, Iraq’s al-Sumaria television network reported.

Saudi-owned al-Arabiya al-Hadath channel cited “sources” as saying that the rocket targeted the American base inside the airport.

No group or person has claimed responsibility for the incident. 

It came just a day after a rocket struck a building near the heavily fortified Green Zone in the Iraqi capital, which houses some government offices and foreign diplomatic missions, including the US embassy.

An Iraqi military statement said security forces had stopped a Katyusha rocket from being launched at Camp Taji base north of Baghdad which houses US-led forces.

The back-to-back incidents come in the wake of a controversial US test of a Patriot missile system inside the Green Zone.  

Baghdad strongly condemned it, with Deputy Parliament Speaker Hassan Karim al-Kaabi saying that by conducting the test, Washington just added to the mass of its provocations and illegal actions in Iraq.

Sadrist coalition warns US

Also on Sunday, a member of Sairoon (Alliance Towards Reform), the largest parliamentary bloc in Iraq that is led by influential cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, denounced the provocative US test.

Speaking to Arabic-language al-Maalomah news agency, MP Salam al-Shammari said the United States continues its acts of egregious violation against Iraq without according any respect to standing international agreements and regulations.

“The US’s violations have reached a point, where they cannot be met with silence anymore,” he said. Washington acts as if Iraq were “one of its states,” Shammari said.

He urged the government of Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi to adopt a clear stance on the violation, especially in light of the January 5 parliamentary vote for the withdrawal of all US-led forces from the country.

The legislature overwhelmingly passed the vote two days after the US assassination of senior Iranian commander General Qassem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the second-in-command of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) counter-terrorism force, and their companions near the Baghdad airport, on US President Donald Trump’s direct order.

The assassination was followed by mass protests and monumental funeral ceremonies in both Iran and Iraq.

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