Iraqi Militia Claims Attacks on U.S. Bases in Iraq, Syria

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An Iraqi Shiite militia on Thursday claimed responsibility for launching attacks on an airbase housing U.S. forces in western Iraq and a U.S. base in eastern Syria.

The militia, calling itself the Islamic Resistance in Iraq, which is an umbrella body for Iranian-backed Iraqi militias, claimed in an online statement that its fighters attacked the security towers in the perimeter of the Ayn al-Asad Airbase near the town of al-Baghdadi, some 190 km northwest of the capital Baghdad.

The attackers used machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) in their clash with the security forces before they withdrew from the scene, the statement said.

It added that one of the attackers was killed in the clash that took place at the outer fence of the airbase.

In a separate statement, the armed group claimed that it fired rockets on a U.S. base in the Koniko gas field in Syria, without providing further details.

Meanwhile, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based war monitor, confirmed that explosions were heard in the gas field area, without reporting any casualties.

The attacks by the Iraqi armed group are part of a series of retaliatory measures that it took against the U.S. forces, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) in the Gaza Strip, said the observatory.

The incident marked the 43rd recorded attack on the U.S. bases in Syria since Oct. 19, it added. 

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