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07 Jan 2020 | 05:55 PM UTC

Iraq: Multiple rockets hit Ain Al-Asad Air Base, host to US forces, January 8 /update 11

At least ten rockets hit Ain Al-Asad Air Base (Anbar province), host to US forces, January 8; no casualties immediately reported

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Event

At least ten rockets hit Ain Al-Asad Air Base (Anbar province), host to US forces, early on Wednesday (local time), January 8. Iran state TV claims Tehran has fired "tens" of surface-to-surface missiles at the base as revenge for the January 3 killing of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani. No casualties were immediately reported. Details are still emerging.

Additional Iranian attacks targeting facilities hosting US forces are possible over the near term; retaliatory US strikes are also possible on Iranian state and proxy targets in the region over the coming days.

Context

The US Department of Defense released a statement on January 3 claiming responsibility for an airstrike targeting and killing Qasem Soleimani, the commander of Iran's Quds Force, near Baghdad International Airport (BGW) the same day. According to the statement, Soleimani was "actively developing plans to attack American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region." Notably, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of Iraq's Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), was also killed in the strike. The situation remains fluid.

Advice

Individuals in Iraq are advised to closely monitor developments, avoid the affected area and related demonstration sites, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.

The security environment in Iraq remains complex. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to all travel.