Two rockets hit Iraqi capital’s Green Zone
BAGHDAD: Two rockets crashed late Wednesday into the Green Zone of Iraq’s capital, the high-security zone where foreign embassies are located, including the US embassy, security sources said.
Media correspondents in Baghdad heard two loud blasts just before midnight, followed by the Green Zone’s warning sirens.
The attack came about 24 hours after ballistic missiles were fired by Tehran at Iraqi bases hosting American and other coalition forces, but did not result in injuries.
The strikes were in retaliation last week for an American drone strike that killed top Iranian general Qasem Soleimani and Iraqi commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.
Muhandis was Hashed al-Shaabi’s deputy head, a network of armed groups integrated into the Iraqi state but also closely linked to Tehran.
The U.S. had suspected Hashed organizations of being behind a series of rocket attacks on Baghdad’s U.S. embassy and bases housing U.S. troops across the country.
The Hashed’s hardline groups promised on Wednesday that they would also take revenge on the U.S. invasion.
Paramilitary leader Qais al-Khazali who was blacklisted by the United States as a “criminal” said Iraq’s response to the United States “will be no less than the scale of the Iranian answer.”
A hardline Hashed group, Harakat al-Nujaba threatened to avenge Muhandis.
“To American soldiers: Do not close your eyes. Revenge for the martyr Muhandis is coming at the hands of Iraqis — until the last soldier among you leaves,” it said.