Two Rockets Fall in Baghdad, No Casualties

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Two Rockets Fall in Baghdad, No CasualtiesIraq’s military said in a statement on Monday that two Katyusha rockets had fallen late on Sunday in Baghdad’s Jadiriya area, near the heavily fortified Green Zone, without causing any casualties.One of the rockets landed near the Babylon hotel, which is used by Iraqi travelers and sometimes for government meetings, the military said in the statement.Last week, at least six missiles targeting Erbil international airport in northern Iraq were intercepted, as diplomatic tensions between Washington and Baghdad mounted over a spate of rocket attacks targeting the US presence.The US-led coalition maintains a troop presence on a base inside the airport. The recent attacks have, until now, exclusively targeted the heavily fortified Green Zone, the seat of the Baghdad government, and the capital’s airport. Roadside bombs have also routinely targeted convoys carrying materials for the US-led coalition forces.The frequency of the attacks led to US threats to close its Baghdad embassy unless decisive action was taken to reign in Shiite militias suspected of launching the attacks.Iraq’s foreign minister on Wednesday said the government was taking measures to consolidate security in the Green Zone and airport.The attack in Erbil, a rare target for rockets, is considered a serious escalation by Iraqi officials.Kurdish officials, and former Finance Minister Hoshiyar Zebari, said the incident was “yet another escalation” to undermine security in the country by “the same groups who are attacking the US embassy in Baghdad and its convoys. Action is needed to stop it.”

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