Trump: Iran 'Will Be Held Fully Responsible' After US Embassy in Iraq Attacked

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Posted: Dec 31, 2019 5:18 AM
Trump: Iran 'Will Be Held Fully Responsible' After US Embassy in Iraq Attacked

The U.S. Embassy in Iraq is being attacked by Iraqi Shiite militia supporters, who’ve broken into the compound.

According to the Associated Press, a fire has been set and sounds of gunfire were heard.   

An Associated Press reporter at the scene saw flames rising from inside the compound and at least three U.S. soldiers on the roof of the main building inside embassy. It was not clear what caused the fire at the reception area near the parking lot of the compound. A man on a loudspeaker urged the mob not to enter the compound, saying: “The message was delivered.”

Smoke from the tear gas rose in the area, and at least three of the protesters appeared to have difficulties breathing.

The gate that was smashed was a side-entrance, one used by cars to enter the embassy compound. Hundreds of protesters had pushed about 5 meters (16 feet) into a corridor that leads to the main building but the protesters were still about 200 meters (yards) away from it. (AP)

The crowd had been chanting “Down, down USA”, “Death to America” and “Death to Israel” as they tried scaling the embassy’s walls.

The attack comes after the U.S. carried out airstrikes against five sites of Kataeb Hezbollah, an Iranian-backed militia, in Iraq and Syria in retaliation for the killing of a U.S. contractor and injuries to four U.S. troops and two members of the Iraqi Security Forces.

Iraq condemned the airstrikes, calling them a “violation of Iraq's sovereignty” and the terrorists vowed to retaliate, with KH’s military commander reportedly saying their forces were “ready to destroy the bases of the American occupiers and crush their rotten heads.”

Embassy staff and the U.S. ambassador to Iraq were evacuated but some security staff remained, Reuters reports. Some video from the scene shows at least six U.S. soldiers inside. 

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) weighed in on the attack early Tuesday morning, saying Iran "must be held accountable" and asked for prayers for the soldiers still inside the embassy. 

Update:

Update: President Trump responded and said Iran "will be held fully responsible."

This is a breaking news post and will be updated.