18:23 GMT26 October 2020
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    On 31 December, as the whole world was preparing to ring in the new decade, Iraqi militias stormed the entrances to the American Embassy in Iraq after a series of US airstrikes in the area. The assault saw the Pentagon act immediately by boosting personnel around the embassy with security guards resorting to tear gas to disperse the protesters.

    Impressive pictures and videos have been shared online revealing scenes of destruction inside the US Embassy in Baghdad shortly after the building was stormed by protesters over New Year’s Eve.

    The circulated snapshots feature windows blown out with smoke rising from a reception room in the embassy, the checkpoint of which was left in complete ruins as a result of the assault.

    Separate videos show raging crowds attempting to batter down doors and set fire to the fence:

    On Tuesday, Iraqi protesters set fire first to the outer fence of the US Embassy in Baghdad and then the checkpoint, in response to recent American airstrikes against the Iraqi Shia Kata’ib Hezbollah militia.

    To quell the unrest in the Iraqi capital, which spanned roughly two days, Trump ordered to dispatch additional Marines to the area. US troops dropped flares from aircraft and fired tear gas to disperse the protesting militias, some of whom were hurling rocks and trying to set fire to walls or attempting to climb the compound’s walls, CNN reported citing witnesses.

    Iraqi security forces have for now regained control of the area around the embattled compound, as the protesters were cleared away from the entrance to the embassy on Wednesday evening.

    US officials instantly put the blame for the New Year's attack on Iran, with POTUS Trump threatening Tehran with countermeasures.

    The Iranian Foreign Ministry dismissed outright the “empty” accusations by the Trump administration and called on the White House to put an end to its “destructive policies” in the Middle East.

    "Iran will be held fully responsible for lives lost, or damage incurred, at any of our facilities", Trump tweeted. "They will pay a very BIG PRICE! This is not a Warning, it is a Threat".

    "If you were logical -- which you're not -- you'd see that your crimes in Iraq, Afghanistan... have made nations hate you", Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei hit back adding the US “can’t do anything".

    Related:

    IRGC Slams US Airstrikes in Iraq, Says People, PMF ‘Reserve the Right to Retaliate’ - Report
    DoD to Immediately Deploy 750 More Soldiers to Middle East After US Embassy Attack in Iraq - Esper
    Israel Congratulates US After Strikes on Shia Forces in Iraq, Syria – Netanyahu's Office
    Tags:
    US Embassy, Iraq, troops, personnel
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