Two Katyusha rockets hit near US embassy in Baghdad's Green Zone
Tuesday, 24 September 2019
Two Katyusha rockets have hit the Green Zone of Baghdad, a fortified area in central part of the Iraqi capital, according to security and diplomatic sources.
AhlulBayt News Agency (ABNA): Two Katyusha rockets have hit the Green Zone of Baghdad, a fortified area in central part of the Iraqi capital, according to security and diplomatic sources.
No casualty or damage has been reported so far following the Monday attacks.
A foreign security source inside the Green Zone said two 100mm rockets hit close to the US embassy and a third fell into the Tigris River, which the embassy overlooks.
"One hit about three meters (ten feet) inside a gate on the embassy compound," the source told AFP.
An Iraqi security source confirmed to AFP that two Katyusha rockets landed near the embassy shortly before midnight.
They were found to have been fired from an area in southern Baghdad. The Iraqi military said two projectiles hit the edges of the Green Zone.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blasts.
Foreign diplomatic sources within the zone said US embassy sirens wailed across the area twice, and stopped shortly before 1:00am local time on Tuesday morning.
The last rocket attack on the Green Zone took place on May 19, just days after the US announced an "ordered departure" of all non-essential diplomatic staff in Iraq.
After decades of back-to-back conflicts, Iraq has enjoyed a period of relative stability since declaring victory over the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group in late 2017.
In a sign of the improving security situation, Iraqi authorities have been working since last year to loosen security restrictions around the Green Zone, which is still one of the world's most high-security institutional quarters..
Concrete blast walls have been removed and through-traffic has been allowed for the first time in over a decade, but the US embassy remains one of the most highly-secured area in the zone.
The Green Zone houses the parliament, the prime minister's office, the presidency, other key institutions, top officials' homes and embassies.