Missile attack targets US base in Syria

A US naval frigate at the moment of launching a missile - January 12, 2024 (CENTCOM)

A US naval frigate at the moment of launching a missile - January 12, 2024 (CENTCOM)


A military group from inside Iraqi territory targeted a base for the International Coalition led by the United States in northeast Syria, with no information on the extent of the damage caused by the shelling.

The Iraqi Security Media Cell stated that the Iraqi security forces found on the evening of Sunday, April 22, west of Ninewa province near the Iraqi-Syrian border, a vehicle from which missiles were launched from Iraq towards an International Coalition base deep inside Syrian territory.

The cell added that it continues its search operation to apprehend the perpetrators, after finding the vehicle burned in the launch area.

For its part, the international news agency Reuters quoted two Iraqi security sources and an unnamed US official, stating that at least five missiles were launched from the Iraqi town of Zumar towards a US military base in northeastern Syria last Sunday.

The agency reported from the US official that more than five missiles were launched from Iraq toward International Coalition Forces at a coalition base in the town of Rmelan in al-Hasakah province, northeastern Syria, noting that the attack did not result in any injuries.

The official described the attack as a “failed missile attack,” according to the agency, but it was not clear whether the missiles failed to hit the base or were destroyed before reaching it, and it was also unclear whether the base was the intended target itself.

He added that an aircraft belonging to the International Coalition carried out a strike against the launch platform following the attack.

The security sources and an Iraqi army officer described by Reuters as “senior” (they were not named) said that a small truck with a missile launch platform was parked in the town of Zumar on the border with Syria.

The Iraqi army officer told the agency that the Iraqi forces seized the destroyed truck to conduct further investigations, and the initial investigations showed that it was destroyed in an “air strike”.

No party claimed responsibility for the attack up to the time of writing this news, nor did the United States officially announce a military base belonging to it in Syria was attacked.

Calm since February

US Defense Department (Pentagon) officials have repeatedly mentioned that US bases in Syria and Iraq have not been targeted since early February following wide-ranging strikes directed by the United States at Iran-backed militias in the region.

Among the official comments issued by the United States in this context, the Pentagon press secretary Pat Ryder said that the bases had not witnessed any attacks since February, attributing this to two reasons, the first being that such targeting is dangerous, and the second because US forces are present in the region to focus on the mission of defeating the Islamic State organization.

Ryder added that if the attacks or threats returned, his country would take appropriate measures to protect its forces, as it had done before.

On February 20, Pentagon deputy press secretary Sabrina Singh said during a press briefing that the latest attack suffered by the US bases in Syria or Iraq was on February 4.

There has been no update on the information spoken by the Pentagon since then.

On January 28, before the attacks on the US bases stopped, the Islamic Resistance in Iraq (responsible for the attacks against the US bases) issued a statement saying that it granted an opportunity for the “occupying forces” to withdraw, in reference to the US army.

The Islamic Resistance in Iraq is a coalition of military factions that the United States refers to as an agent of Iran, spread in Iraq and Syria, and is responsible for most attacks targeting US bases from mid-October 2023 to the past February.

After US strikes

On February 2, after targeting 85 locations in Syria and Iraq, the United States said it had struck command and control centers, intelligence facilities, and weapon storage facilities used by Iran-backed militias to attack US forces and Coalition Forces.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby, following the same strikes, said his country struck targets that would affect the ability of Iran-backed militias to launch future strikes against Americans, according to a recorded press conference published by the White House.

Reuters quoted US officials as estimating that Iran manufactured the drone that attacked the US base, resulting in the killing of three American soldiers and injuring at least 40 others.

The US attacks came in response to a drone attack that resulted in the killing of three American soldiers and the wounding of more than 40 others at a military point known as “Tower 22” on the border triangle between Syria, Iraq, and Jordan at the end of December 2023.


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