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Israeli air strike hits arms camp in Iraq



Israel air-raided an arms depot in Iraq, which was reportedly used by Iran to transport weapons to Syria. An attack that could destabilize Iraq and drive deeper into the conflict between the United States and Iran. [19659002] The attack, which is believed to be the first Israeli bomb attack in Iraq in nearly four decades, represents an expansion of Israel's military campaign against Iranian targets in Syria.

The Israeli attack last month was one of several recent attacks on weapons depots controlled by Iraqi militia with ties to Iran. It was not clear who carried out the other attacks that marginalized Iraq as he tried to recover from nearly 40 years of war and instability.

Response to Thursday's attacks on Iraq's National Security Adviser, Falih al-Fayadh, said Iraq wanted to avoid being part of a fight between Iran and other countries and "being forced into war".

"The Iraqi government, and in particular its security agencies and armed forces, will take all necessary measures to protect Iraq and said the government has not yet figured out who is behind the attacks." A high-level intelligence officer from the Middle East said Israel bombed a base north of Baghdad on July 19.

Two high-ranking American officials said Israel had carried out several recent strikes against ammunition dumps for Iranian-backed groups in Iraq in recent days.

In a statement released Wednesday Jamal Jaafar Al-Ibrahim, the deputy chief of the Popular Mobilization Forces known Iraqi militia, blamed "American and Israeli aircraft" for "repeated attacks" on the group's headquarters.

The Israeli military declined to comment the attacks, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said who on Monday during a visit to Kiev in Ukraine had asked for them: "Iran has nowhere immunity."

"A state that says, 'We will destroy you and us will build bases to fire missiles and terrorist Send cells against you "- as far as I'm concerned, he has no immunity," he told reporters. "We will take action against them – and they will proceed now, wherever necessary."

Israel has carried out hundreds of air raids on Iranian assets during the eight-year civil war in Syria.

In Iraq, this is the case In the past three months, there have been four attacks on weapons depots. Three of them belong to the People's Mobilization Force in or near the province of Salahuddin. The fourth station was a base in Baghdad used by the federal police and militias.

The July 19 Israeli attack hit a base the Iranian Revolutionary Guards said would transfer weapons to Syria. The Israeli strike, launched from Iraq, destroyed a cargo of guided missiles with a range of 125 miles.

An Iraqi military official confirmed that a base was hit and said that three people were killed in Iraq strike, including an Iranian.

The most recent attack occurred on Monday at the periphery of Balad's massive Air Force Base, an Iraqi military base formerly used by the United States. The militia built storage facilities around the base, and the bombing triggered an explosion of Katyusha rockets, mortar shells, and grenades into the area.

No deaths were reported.

The militias, also known as Hasht al Shabi, are officially an arm of the Iraqi security forces, but a handful operate on a semi-independent basis and some have strong relations with Iran. The militia began in 2014 as informal volunteer troops to help defend the country against the Islamic State.

Since then, some of the closest-to-Iranian militias have become Iranian deputies whose interests are more in line with their sponsors in Tehran than with the Iraqi government. Some of their leaders are now on the United States terrorist list.

Israeli officials say they have become a channel for Iran's arms transit to its militias in Syria and Lebanese-based Hezbollah. Iran has become a critical partner of the Syrian government, which has allowed it to build a substantial military infrastructure there, which Israel has repeatedly attacked.

Iraq, in which several foreign forces are still fighting against the Islamic State, has made it clear that it does not want this part of this struggle. Iraq is a close ally of Iran, but Iraqi officials are worried about being exploited by Tehran or Washington trying to punish Iran for its military activities in the Middle East.

The Israeli move also poses potential threats to the United States, whose troops remain in Iraq fighting the Islamic State. Because the United States is a close Israeli ally, Iraqis are quickly blaming Israelis for allowing them to carry out attacks in Iraq.

A senior American official said Israel has crossed borders with the strike in Iraq. On condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive diplomatic questions, the official said the airstrikes could remove the US military from Iraq.

The last known Israeli attack in Iraq occurred in 1981, when an air raid destroyed a nuclear reactor under construction near Baghdad. Israeli officials claimed that the reactor should produce nuclear weapons.


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