A deadly rocket attack in December 2019 kicked off a series of escalations that culminated with the drone strike in Baghdad and Tehran's launch of over a dozen ballistic missiles targeting al Asad and the airfield in Irbil.
The rockets struck Ain al-Asad airbase in Anbar province at 7:20 a.m., Operation Inherent Resolve spokesman Col. Wayne Marotto said, adding that the Iraqi security forces are leading an investigation into the attack. There are no reports of casualties or damage, and no group immediately claimed responsibility.
It also came after President Joe Biden ordered a US airstrike in Syria, in response to a series of rocket attacks on American and coalition troops in Iraq.
Ain Al Asad Airbase, which is located in Iraq's Al Anbar province and hosts Iraqi and U.S. troops, was subjected to a massive rocket attack on Wednesday, Iraq's state-run news agency INA reported, citing a security source.
The attack comes two days before Pope Francis's historic visit to the country.
Wednesday's attack targeted the same base where Iran struck with a barrage of missiles in January a year ago in retaliation for the killing of Soleimani. In Iraq they have been used as a tool for Iranian proxies focused on pressing Washington to withdraw its forces from the country, where they are helping battle the Islamic State group.
On Feb. 16 a rocket attack on US -led forces in northern Iraq killed a civilian contractor and injured a USA service member.
It stoked fears of a possible repeat of a series of tit-for-tat attacks that escalated past year, culminating in the US-directed strike that killed Iranian General Qassim Soleimani outside the Baghdad airport.
AFP also quoted security sources as saying in connection with today's attack that a contractor had been killed in a rocket attack on Ain al-Asad.
Iraqi forces were leading the investigation into the attack, Col. Wayne Marotto, a USA military spokesman, wrote on Twitter. The forces withdrew from several Iraqi based across the country to consolidate chiefly in Ain al-Asad and Baghad.