The United States launched retaliatory airstrikes in Iraq against Iran-backed militias, after two rocket attacks wounded and killed British and American soldiers.
The American defense department on Thursday stated that five armor depots were targeted. Among other targets was the under-construction airport in the holy city of Karbala.
Earlier on Wednesday, a rocket attack on killed two US soldiers in the Camp Taji military base.
The US commander Gen Kenneth McKenzie told the Senate committee that it was likely that the attack was facilitated and executed by the militia group, Kataib Hezbollah.
These weapons-storage facilities include facilities that housed weapons used to target the US and coalition troops,”
American authorities insisted that it was more of a defensive strike to the threat posed by the Iran-backed militias. Kataib Hezbollah, the group which helped defeat ISIS in the region.
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Aljazeera reported that the American forces also attacked other affiliate militia groups with Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) in Babylon and Karbala. But no fatalities have been reported yet.
However, a monitoring group reported that the Imam Ali military base was also attacked, killing 26 people. The American authorities believe that the base was built by Iran.
America has blamed Iran-backed for a series of attacks, particularly 13 attacks on the bases last year, which hosted American and coalition troops in Iraq.
Violence triggered in December last year when after the death of the American civilian, Trump gave the orders to kill the top Iranian military commander Gen Qasim Soleimani.
Though on early Thursday, the US coalition denied carrying out any airstrikes against the militia group in eastern Syria.
The Wednesday attacks killed a British soldier. Prime Minister Boris Johnson condemned the attack while Trump ordered an immediate response with all the options on the table.
The British ministry of defense identified the soldier killed in the rocket attacks as Lance Corporal Brodie Gillon. He was serving as a combat medical technician.
The United States, Iraq, and Iran
The latest strikes are likely to trigger the cycle of violence in Iraq. Reuters reported that the PMF has already condemned the raids on their bases and labeled it as an attack on Iraqi sovereignty.
The development can once again ignite the calls for the United States’ soldiers to leave the country.
Last year in December, a civilian-military contractor was killed by the militias, and American authorities carried out airstrikes in response to killing 25 militants.
This provoked the protests outside the American embassy in Iraq, and the US said that Iran would have to pay a heavy price for this.
On the third day of the new year, Trump ordered airstrikes near Baghdad airport. The strikes killed the top Iranian commander and two members of the militia group.
Under pressure from the public, Iran launched strikes after five days of Soleimani killing.
More than 5,000 Us troops, as well as soldiers of other ally countries, are deployed at the request of the government.
However, after the events of January Iraqi parliament passed a resolution demanding the withdrawal of foreign soldiers from the country.
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