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Oxygen Tank Blast, Fire Kill 82 in Hospital

Iraq says at least 200 people were rescued

(Newser) - An explosion and fire in the intensive care unit at a hospital in Baghdad killed 82 people and injured 110, the Iraqi government said. The unit treats severe cases of COVID-19, and at least 28 of the patients killed were on ventilators, CBS reports. At least 200 people were rescued...

Pope Joins Historic Appeal for Coexistence in Peace

'We need one another,' Francis says after meeting in Iraq

(Newser) - After a historic private meeting with a senior Shiite cleric in Iraq, Pope Francis appealed for religious tolerance. "We need one another," the pope said later in a speech on the desert plain of Ur, believed to be the birthplace of Abraham. "Hostility, extremism and violence are...

Iraq Prepares for First-Ever Papal Visit

It's Francis' first overseas trip since pandemic began

(Newser) - Pope Francis heads to Iraq on Friday to urge the country’s dwindling number of Christians to stay put and help rebuild the country after years of war and persecution, brushing aside the coronavirus pandemic and security concerns to make the first-ever papal visit to the country. Iraqis were keen...

Rockets Hit Iraqi Base Holding US Troops

No casualties or damages reported as Pope prepares for visit

(Newser) - At least 10 rockets were fired Wednesday at an Iraqi military base hosting troops of the US-led coalition to defeat ISIS, including US troops, according to statements from the coalition and military, per ABC News . The rockets struck Ain al-Asad airbase in Anbar province at 7:20am local time, coalition...

US Airstrike Hits Syria Target Tied to Iran-Backed Militias

Attack is first military action taken under Biden

(Newser) - President Biden ordered an airstrike in Syria on Thursday, after recent rocket attacks launched on US forces in Iraq. The target was a structure thought to be used for smuggling weapons by two Shia militias backed by Iran, CNN reports. The goal of the US attack was to hurt the...

A Once-Common Scourge Returns to Baghdad

Twin suicide bombings kill more than 30 at market

(Newser) - Maybe Baghdad residents would have been more wary a few years ago. Authorities say a suicide bomber drew a crowd around him at a busy marketplace Thursday morning by pretending to be ill, then detonated his explosives, reports CNN . Soon after, a second suicide bomber struck nearby. The AP puts...

Across the Globe, an Arrest Warrant for Trump

Iraqi court charges US president with premeditated murder

(Newser) - An arrest warrant was issued Thursday for outgoing President Trump in connection with the killing of an Iranian general and a powerful Iraqi militia leader last year, Iraq's judiciary said, per the AP . The warrant was issued by a judge in Baghdad's investigative court tasked with probing the...

Saddam's 'Red Devil' Is Reportedly Dead

Ba'ath Party announces death of Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri

(Newser) - Saddam Hussein's former right-hand man and one of the most wanted men in the world has been reported dead. Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, the former vice chairman of the Revolutionary Command Council who was promoted to head of the Ba'ath Party after Hussein's execution and evaded capture even...

US Announces Major Drawdown in Iraq

Just 3K troops will remain at the end of this month

(Newser) - The Trump administration is pulling nearly half of its troops out of Iraq. The US commander in the Middle East said Wednesday that troops would be reduced this month from 5,200 to 3,000—about the number that were in the country in 2015, during the early phase of...

Baghdad Sets New Blistering Heat Record

It was 125.2 degrees on Tuesday

(Newser) - Baghdad hit 125.2 degrees Tuesday, the highest temperature ever recorded for the city in Iraq. The Middle East is in the midst of a heat wave, and on Wednesday, Baghdad hit its second-highest temperature ever: 124 degrees. The previous record, set in July 2015, was 123.8, the Washington ...

Authorities: Gilgamesh Tablet Needs to Leave the US

They say it must be returned to Iraq

(Newser) - A 3,500-year-old clay tablet bought by the Hobby Lobby for display in the Museum of the Bible should be returned to Iraq, US federal prosecutors said in a civil complaint Monday. The cuneiform tablet is inscribed with a portion of the Epic of Gilgamesh, hence, its name: the Gilgamesh...

Country in Crisis Mode Finally Picks a Leader

In Iraq, a former spy chief is now prime minister

(Newser) - Iraq's former spy chief was sworn in as prime minister by lawmakers early Thursday after weeks of tense political negotiations as the country faces a severe economic crisis spurred by plummeting oil prices and the coronavirus pandemic, the AP reports. The majority of 255 legislators attending the session approved...

25 Rockets Hit Camp With US Troops: Officials

Camp Taji in Iraq is under fire

(Newser) - A barrage of rockets hit a base housing US and other coalition troops north of Baghdad on Saturday, Iraqi security officials said, just days after a similar attack killed three servicemen , including two Americans. The US-led coalition said at least 25 107mm rockets struck Camp Taji just before 11am, the...

'You Don't Get to Kill and Wound Americans, Get Away With It'

Pentagon says US hit Iran-backed group that attacked Iraq base

(Newser) - The US launched airstrikes Thursday in Iraq, targeting the Iranian-backed Shia militia members believed responsible for the rocket attack that killed and wounded American and British troops at a base north of Baghdad, the Pentagon said. US officials said multiple strikes by US fighter jets hit five locations and mainly...

2 Americans Killed in Camp Taji Attack

Iraq will investigate attack on base

(Newser) - Three service members were killed, including two Americans, and a dozen more were injured when a barrage of rockets were fired at a military base in Iraq, US officials say. At least 12 coalition personnel were also injured late Wednesday by a barrage of rockets targeting Camp Taji base, located...

2 Marines Killed in ISIS Cave Raid

4 other US troops were injured during Sunday mission

(Newser) - Two US Marines were killed Sunday in an attack on an ISIS cave complex in the mountains of north central Iraq. The unidentified Marines from an elite Raiders unit were advising Iraqi soldiers in the Qara Chockh Mountains, about 37 miles south of Erbil, when they were killed by enemy...

Pentagon Raises Number of Troops Hurt in Iran Strike

50 service members suffered traumatic brain injuries

(Newser) - The Pentagon has raised to 50 the number of US service members who suffered traumatic brain injuries in Iran's missile strike earlier this month on an Iraqi air base, the third time the number of injuries has been increased. The new total released belies President Trump's initial claim...

Rocket Attack at US Embassy in Iraq Injures One
More Unrest Roils Iraq

More Unrest Roils Iraq

Meanwhile, a rocket attack on US embassy injures one

(Newser) - A nighttime rocket attack on the US embassy in Baghdad injured one personnel member and caused some material damage, staffers said Monday, per the AP . The two staff members, who spoke on condition of anonymity, did not specify the injured person's nationality or the severity of the wounds. They...

8 Rockets Hit Iraqi Air Base
8 Rockets Hit
Iraqi Air Base

8 Rockets Hit Iraqi Air Base

Four Iraqi officers are wounded at Balad Air Base

(Newser) - Eight rockets landed on an Iraqi air base Sunday and injured four Iraqi officers—but who perpetrated the attack remains unclear. Iraq's military says the Katyusha rockets struck Balad Air Base, which hosts foreign contractors and US troops roughly 46 miles north of Baghdad, CNN reports. Al Jazeera notes...

Iran: Our Missile Strikes 'a Slap in the Face' to the US

But no reports of US or coalition casualties so far, though Tehran claims dozens

(Newser) - The US military says it is still assessing casualties from Iranian missile strikes on two bases in Iraq that house US and coalition troops—but Tehran claims the impact was devastating. Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei on Wednesday called the barrage of missiles in retaliation for the killing of Gen. Qasem...

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