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Rockets Target North Iraq Oil Refinery, Cause ‘Minor Damage’

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Six rockets landed Sunday in northern Iraq’s autonomous Kurdistan region, Kurdish counter-terrorism forces said, with “minor damage” reported at a key oil refinery, according to a separate security source. News Online

“Six rockets fell near the Zab river in the Khabat district,” Kurdish counter-terrorism forces said in a statement, without specifying the target of the attack.

The attack caused no casualties or damage, the statement said.

But two sources speaking on condition of anonymity said that two rockets hit part of the Kawergosk refinery northwest of the Kurdish capital Arbil, causing “minor material damage”.

A fire broke out at the site but was “quickly contained”, one of the sources said.

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FILE – In this Sunday, Oct. 23, 2016 file photo, youths ride bicycles next to a burning oil well in Qayara, about 31 miles (50 km) south of Mosul, Iraq. The Islamic State group has pioneered brutally innovative tactics and launched diversionary attacks that have shocked its opponents, and now many fear it has more surprises in store as Iraqi forces close in on Mosul. Last week’s assault on the northern city of Kirkuk offers a glimpse at the kind of asymmetrical response it might mount as Iraqi forces close in on Mosul, its last major urban bastion in the country. (AP Photo/Marko Drobnjakovic, File)

The rocket attack was not immediately claimed.

The Kurdish counter-terrorism forces said the rockets were fired from the town of Bartella in neighbouring Nineveh province.

Nineveh falls under the administration of the federal government in Baghdad. Its capital Mosul was once the stronghold of the Islamic State jihadist group before it was retaken by pro-government forces in 2017.

In early April, three rockets landed at Kawergosk, with no casualties or material damage reported.

The April rocket fire came less than a month after Iran’s Revolutionary Guards — the Islamic republic’s ideological army — claimed ballistic missile fire on Arbil that it said targeted an Israeli “strategic centre”.

Kurdish authorities have insisted the Jewish state has no sites in or near Arbil.


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