Rockets fired toward US Embassy in Baghdad; one shot down, other misses

The embassy is located in the protected Green Zone area of the Iraqi capital city.

The rocket that missed the embassy area landed near the Grand Festivities Square area near the Green Zone, damaging two civilian vehicles, The Jerusalem Post reported.

Both rockets landed north of the Union III base, the headquarters of the U.S.-led coalition and Iraqi government forces opposing the Islamic State group, a defense source told Fox News. There were no immediate reports of casualties, the source said.

 The U.S. Embassy is seen from across the Tigris River in Baghdad, Iraq, Jan. 3, 2020. (Associated Press)

 The U.S. Embassy is seen from across the Tigris River in Baghdad, Iraq, Jan. 3, 2020. (Associated Press)

No group had yet claimed responsibility for the rocket fire, the report said.

The incident came ahead of an end-of-year deadline set by Iranian-backed militias for the U.S. to withdraw its forces from Iraq, according to the Post.

On Dec. 9, the top U.S. commander for the Middle East said the U.S. would keep the current 2,500 troops in Iraq for the foreseeable future, and he warned that he expected increasing attacks on U.S. and Iraqi personnel by Iranian-backed militias determined to get American forces out.

Marine Gen. Frank McKenzie told The Associated Press at the Pentagon that despite the shift by U.S. forces to a non-combat role in Iraq, they would still provide air support and other military aid for Iraq's fight against the Islamic State group.

Groups aligned with Iran have vowed to seek revenge against the U.S. for a 2020 drone strike that resulted in the death of Iran's Gen. Qassem Soleimani and Iraqi military commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the AP reported.

In November, a drone targeted the home of Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi in a failed assassination attempt.

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