Baghdad and Tehran have condemned airstrikes against an Iraqi militia supported by Iran. US forces hit targets belonging to a group called Kataib Hezbollah, as retaliation for a rocket attack that killed a US civilian contractor at an American base.
The killing of two top Iranian and Iraqi commanders by US forces could aid Iran in strengthening its foothold in Iraq. Experts say it also undermines the monthslong anti-government protest movement in Iraq.
The US had downplayed the effects of an Iranian attack on a US airbase in Iraq in an apparent bid to defuse tensions. However, the Pentagon has now admitted 109 service members suffered brain injuries.
It was initially believed no one was hurt in the January 8 missile attack on the Ain al-Asad airbase in western Iraq. Fifty US soldiers have been diagnosed with brain injuries, 18 of whom have been treated in Germany.
Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi has denounced US attacks on an Iranian-backed militia in his country. The airstrikes in response to the killing of a US citizen come amid high tensions between Tehran and Washington.
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