United States forces say they have shot down a drone hovering near Ain al-Asad air base, which hosts American troops, in the Iraqi province of al-Anbar.
A statement from the US Combined Joint Task Force said forces inside the base brought down the armed unmanned aerial vehicle entering the base with counter-rocket, artillery systems early on Friday at 1.46 am local time, 22.46 GMT.
Russia Today Arabic Channel reported that one drone had hit the base and another was brought down near it. The Arabic-language al-Sumaria television network claims that two combat drones hit targets inside the airbase. Nobody has claimed responsibility. The US statement said there were no injuries or damage.
Ain al-Asad has been a major hub for the US military presence since the 2003 invasion and has been a frequent target for Shiite ‘resistance’ groups backed by Tehran. In 2020 it was hit by ballistic missiles fired from Iran in response to the US killing Iranian general Qasem Soleimani and Iraqi militia leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis in a drone strike in Baghdad.
On Thursday, four US troops were injured after rockets hit a base housing American troops at ‘Green Village,’ Deir al-Zor province, Syria. Initial reports had said two soldiers were injured. The US 900-strong military presence in northeast Syria is aimed at preventing a resurgence of the Islamic State group by supporting its Kurdish and other allies.