Published: Thu, June 20, 2019

Iraq rocket explodes near Exxon oil field workers' camp

Iraq rocket explodes near Exxon oil field workers' camp

Hours before the Burjesiya incident, the Iraqi military announced that an improvised rocket had hit a regional command base in the northern city of Mosul, where American troops are reportedly deployed.

Iraqi officials said a Katyusha rocket hit the site in southern Basra province, striking a camp housing workers for Exxon Mobil and other foreign companies. The Kokuka Courageous, one of two oil tankers targeted in an apparent attack in the Gulf of Oman, was brought to the United Arab Emirates' eastern coast Saturday.

U.S. assets in Iraq have been targeted at least five times in as many days, officials said Wednesday, amid a tense standoff between Baghdad's key allies, Washington and Tehran.

ExxonMobil likewise had moved its foreign staff out of Basra's West Qurna 1 oilfield in May.

The remark comes after the Iraqi military said the day before that three rockets landed on Camp Taji base, north of Baghdad.

Oil ministry spokesman Assem Jihad told AFP that those wounded were all Iraqis.

So far, no one has claimed responsibility for the attacks.

Other companies operating at the site include Shell and the Italian firm Eni. Gen. Yahya Rasoul said an investigation was underway and that the military leadership would not allow anyone to interfere with "Iraq's security, sovereignty and commitment to the global community". United States officials have pointed a finger at Iran, which has denied all accusations.

In a statement Tuesday, Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi issued a veiled warning to Washington and Tehran, saying that foreign powers should not use Iraqi soil to settle scores. Shanahan also said the United States was not seeking a conflict with Iran and the additional forces were being sent to protect USA interests and personnel in the region.

Iraq's military ordered security agencies Wednesday to investigate who was behind the spate of attacks, which have caused little damage.

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