Drone attack hits near US forces at Erbil airport in northern Iraq on anniversary of 9/11


Drone attack hits near US forces at Erbil airport in northern Iraq on anniversary of 9/11 terror attacks

  •  A drone attack hit near U.S. forces stationed at Erbil International Airport in northern Iraq on Saturday, Iraqi Kurdish security officials said
  • The strike in Iraq’s Kurdistan region comes on the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks in the United States 
  • The internal security service for Iraq’s autonomous Kurdish region, of which Erbil is the capital, initially said three rockets had hit near the airport 
  • A second statement by the Kurdish counter-terrorism force said the attack had been carried out by explosive-laden drones 
  • U.S. officials blame previous attacks on Iran-aligned Shi’ite Muslim militias which have vowed to fight until the remaining 2,500 U.S. troops leave the country 

A drone attack hit near U.S. forces stationed at Erbil International Airport in northern Iraq on Saturday, Iraqi Kurdish security officials said.

The strike in Iraq’s Kurdistan region comes on the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks in the United States. It is the second drone attack on the airport in as many months.

The internal security service for the autonomous region, of which Erbil is the capital, initially said three rockets had hit near the airport.

A drone attack hit near U.S. forces stationed at Erbil International Airport in northern Iraq on Saturday

The attack occurred at the Erbil International Airport in Iraq, shown on this map

The attack occurred at the Erbil International Airport in Iraq, shown on this map

A second statement by the Kurdish counter-terrorism force said the attack had been carried out by explosive-laden drones.

There were no immediate reports of casualties. Witnesses said they heard at least six explosions in the area.

The airport in Erbil, the capital of the autonomous Kurdish region, has come under attack several times in the past year, including by drones carrying explosives.

U.S. officials blame previous attacks on Iran-aligned Shi’ite Muslim militias which have vowed to fight until the remaining 2,500 U.S. military personnel leave the country.

The strike in Iraq’s Kurdistan region comes on the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks in the United States. It is the second drone attack on the airport in as many months

The U.S. forces are leading an international military coalition whose mandate is to help Iraqi forces fight remnants of the Sunni extremist Islamic State group. The coalition did not immediately comment on Saturday’s incident. 

This is the second attack in two months, with one drone striking the airport in July. There were no injuries or any structural damage. 

That attack came a day after rockets and a drone targeted Ain al-Asad air base, which houses U.S. troops, and the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.

In April, a drone dropped explosives near the U.S. forces stationed at Erbil airport. 

A drone attack hit near U.S. forces stationed at Erbil International Airport in northern Iraq on Saturday, Iraqi Kurdish security officials said. Pictured: Erbil International Airport is pictured in February after flights restarted, following another rocket attack outside the international airport

A drone attack hit near U.S. forces stationed at Erbil International Airport in northern Iraq on Saturday, Iraqi Kurdish security officials said. Pictured: Erbil International Airport is pictured in February after flights restarted, following another rocket attack outside the international airport

The airport in Erbil, the capital of the autonomous Kurdish region, has come under attack several times in the past year, including by drones carrying explosives. U.S. officials blame previous attacks on Iran-aligned Shi'ite Muslim militias which have vowed to fight until the remaining 2,500 U.S. military personnel leave the country. Pictured: The aftermath of the attack in July

The airport in Erbil, the capital of the autonomous Kurdish region, has come under attack several times in the past year, including by drones carrying explosives. U.S. officials blame previous attacks on Iran-aligned Shi’ite Muslim militias which have vowed to fight until the remaining 2,500 U.S. military personnel leave the country. Pictured: The aftermath of the attack in July  

That was the first known attack carried out by an unmanned aerial drone against U.S. forces in Erbil, amid a steady stream of rocket attacks on bases hosting U.S. forces and the embassy in Baghdad that Washington blames on Iran-backed militias.

A video allegedly released by Kurdistan Counter Terrorism Forces and posted to Twitter by the account Aurora Intel appears to show Erbil Airport after the attack.

The video shows flames billowing into the night sky while other videos posted posted to social media purport to show the airport going dark after the alleged rocket attack.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk