Two rockets hit near US airbase in Iraq

There has been no immediate claim of responsibility for the strike.

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On Sunday, two rockets landed near an Iraqi air base just north of Baghdad where American trainers are present, causing no casualties or damage, an Iraqi official said.

Major Gen. Tahseen al-Khafaji said the rockets landed outside Balad air base in the afternoon.

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 housed U.S. contractors and coalition troops. One contractor died after 10 rockets slammed into the base.

Qais al-Khazali, a senior pro-Iran figure in the state-sponsored Hashed al-Shaabi paramilitary force, recently declared that the “resistance” was carrying out attacks and would step them up “unless the US withdraws all its combat forces from across Iraq”.

The latest attack came as Washington prepares to launch a strategic dialogue with the government of Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, who has regularly received threats from pro-Iran factions.

Al-Kadhimi faces the delicate task of balancing the interests of neighboring Iran and the US, both of which are regional rivals deeply involved in Iraqi politics.

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