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Three Missiles Fall Near Oil Refinery in Iraq’s Erbil

Three Missiles Fall Near Oil Refinery in Iraq’s Erbil

Thursday, 7 April, 2022 - 06:30
Security forces at an oil field in Kirkuk. (Reuters)

Three missiles fell near an oil refinery in Iraq’s northern city of Erbil on Wednesday without causing any casualties or damage, Kurdistan anti-terrorism authorities said in a statement.

Iraq’s state news agency cited the statement as saying “initial information show the missiles were launched from Nineveh” province in Iraq.

Sources in the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) told Reuters that the refinery is owned by Iraqi Kurdish businessman Baz Karim Barzanji, the CEO of a major domestic energy company called KAR Group and whose home was hit by Iranian ballistic missiles last month.

In March, Iran attacked Erbil with a dozen ballistic missiles in an unprecedented assault on the capital of the autonomous Iraqi Kurdish region that appeared to target the United States and its allies.

Iran said the attack targeted Israeli “strategic centers” and that it was a retaliation for an Israeli military attack in Syria that killed Iranian military personnel.

The Iraqi Kurdish regional government said the attack only targeted civilian residential areas, not sites belonging to foreign countries, and called on the international community to carry out an investigation.

It dismissed as “baseless allegations” the presence of Israeli sites in and around Erbil.

Iraq saw a surge in rocket and armed-drone attacks at the beginning of the year.

It coincided with the second anniversary of the killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in a US drone strike near Baghdad airport.

Soleimani, killed alongside his Iraqi lieutenant Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, headed the Quds Force, the Revolutionary Guards' foreign operations arm.

In late January, six rockets were fired at Baghdad International Airport, causing no casualties.

Iran itself responded to the January 2020 killing of Soleimani by firing missiles at military bases in Iraq housing US forces.

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