Rockets hit near Iraq base housing US trainers, no one hurt. Two rockets landed Sunday near an Iraqi air base just north of Baghdad where American trainers are present, causing no casualties or damage, an Iraqi official said. Maj. Gen. Tahseen al-Khafaji said the rockets landed outside Balad air base after midday.
The attack was the first on an Iraqi base housing U.S. troops since an assault last month on a base in western Iraq that houses U.S. contractors and coalition troops. One contractor died after at least 10 rockets slammed into the base, raising concerns over a new round of escalating violence.
It followed U.S. strikes on Iran-aligned militia targets along the Iraq-Syria border in late February in retaliation for another deadly attack on a base in Iraq. The Sunday attack comes days ahead of a new round of so-called strategic Iraq-U.S. talks on April 7. The Iraqi government has requested the fourth round of talks, partly in response to pressure from Shiite political factions and militias loyal to Iran that have lobbied for the remaining U.S. troops to leave Iraq. The talks, which began in June under the Trump administration, would be the first under President Joe Biden.
On the agenda are an array of issues, including the presence of U.S. combat forces in the country and the issue of Iraqi militias acting outside of state authority.
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