Rocket attack hits Baghdad's Green Zone amid escalating tensions: reports

Rocket attack hits Baghdad's Green Zone amid escalating tensions: reports
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A rocket fired into Baghdad’s Green Zone Sunday evening did not result in any casualties but landed less than a mile from the U.S. Embassy, according to media reports.

The incident marks the first such attack since three mortar shells landed in an abandoned lot inside the Green Zone in September, according to The Associated Press. No one has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.

The rocket launcher was found by security forces in the neighborhood of Wihda in east Baghdad, according to the AP, citing a security official. Officials briefly closed the roads leading to the Green Zone for security purposes before reopening them.

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The U.S. military has confirmed an explosion in the Green Zone that caused no American or coalition casualties, but has not confirmed the cause, according to the AP.

The incident comes shortly after the State Department recalled all nonemergency personnel from Iraq, citing unspecified threats of possible attacks from Iran-allied militias.

Tensions between the U.S. and Tehran have escalated in recent months after the U.S. deployed a carrier strike to the Persian Gulf, which national security adviser John BoltonJohn Robert BoltonBolton presses Iran to withdraw forces from Syria, areas of conflict Bolton: Sanctions, other pressure will bring Iran to bargaining table Overnight Defense: Trump says he doesn't need Congress to approve Iran strikes in interview with The Hill | New sanctions hit Iran's supreme leader | Schumer seeks to delay defense bill amid Iran tensions | Esper's first day as acting Pentagon chief MORE said was in response to unspecified acts of Iranian aggression. Iran also recently announced it would scale back some commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal on the anniversary of President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew EPA rule would expand Trump officials' powers to reject FOIA requests Democratic senator introduces bill to ban gun silencers Democrats: Ex-Commerce aide said Ross asked him to examine adding census citizenship question MORE’s announcement that the U.S. would withdraw from the deal.

Earlier this month, Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoOvernight Defense: Trump says he doesn't need Congress to approve Iran strikes in interview with The Hill | New sanctions hit Iran's supreme leader | Schumer seeks to delay defense bill amid Iran tensions | Esper's first day as acting Pentagon chief Pompeo meets with Saudi crown prince amid tensions with Iran Poll: 24 percent of voters want military action against Iran MORE cut short a diplomatic trip to Germany to visit Baghdad, telling Iraqi intelligence officials Tehran is threatening U.S. interests in the region.

Iraqi Oil Minister Thamer al-Ghadban said Sunday he has also contacted ExxonMobil over recent evacuations of its personnel from a Basra oil field, saying the evacuation was due to political tensions rather than security concerns, according to the AP.