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Iraq, US-led Coalition Deny Reports of US Airstrike Against Iran-Backed Militia Near Baghdad

Iraq and the U.S.-led coalition denied reports of fresh airstrikes near Baghdad late Jan. 3.

Reuters, Newsweek, and The Associated Press were among the news agencies to report that airstrikes on Friday night hit an Iraqi militia convoy north of Baghdad, killing at least six people.

The militia was backed by Iran, the reports said. Reporters cited anonymous officials, the Popular Mobilization Forces, and Iraqi state TV in reporting on the strikes, asserting the United States carried out them out.

But official sources pushed back on the reports, including Col. Myles Caggins, spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve, a U.S.-led coalition formed to defeat ISIS.

“FACT: The Coalition @CJTFOIR did NOT conduct airstrikes near Camp Taji (north of Baghdad) in recent days,” he said. CJTFOIR is another name for the operation.

FACT: The Coalition @CJTFOIR did NOT conduct airstrikes near Camp Taji (north of Baghdad) in recent days.

— OIR Spokesman Col. Myles B. Caggins III (@OIRSpox) January 4, 2020

Iraqs Joint Operations Command also disputed the reports.

“The Joint Operations Command denies reports in the media of an airstrike last night, targeting a column of the popular mobilization in the Taji area north of Baghdad, and calls for accuracy in the transmission of information and caution against spreading rumors and spreading rumors, especially for the time being,” it stated.

The Popular Mobilization Forces, a grouping of militia groups, including some Iran-backed ones, said in a statement early Saturday that a strike hit a convoy consisting of medics. It later said in another statement that no medical convoys were targeted in the Taji area, according to Reuters.

The rebuttal of the reports came after the U.S. military said a report of an attack on Al Asad Air Base was false.

Iraq Airport Attack
Iraq Airport Attack
A burning vehicle at the Baghdad International Airport following an airstrike in Baghdad, Iraq, early on Jan. 2, 2020. (HO, Iraqi Prime Minister Press Office, via AP)

An Iranian news agency reported thaRead More – Source