Member of Iraqi Security Forces Killed by Rocket Inside Baghdad's Green Zone

A witness saw the rocket approaching the Iraqi capital's zone housing government buildings and foreign missions

Anti-government protesters control some barriers set by Iraqi security forces to close the bridge leading to the Green Zone during a demonstration in Baghdad, Iraq, October 29, 2019.
Khalid Mohammed,AP

A member of the Iraqi security forces was killed by a rocket that fell inside Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone on Wednesday, the military reported. 

A Reuters witness saw the rocket flying towards the Iraqi capital, and a blast was heard coming from its direction.

The Green Zone houses government buildings and foreign missions. Baghdad is in the throes of mass anti-government protests.

Last week, about 1,000 people, some of whom had camped overnight in Baghdad's Tahrir Square, marched towards the Green Zone before being stopped by security forces. One protester was shot and killed near the zone's gate, officials said. 

Earlier this month, explosions were heard inside the Green Zone. The U.S.-led coalition said an investigation is underway, adding that no coalition forces or assets were hit. Coalition spokesman Col. Myles B. Caggins III said at the time that “Coalition troops always reserve the right to defend ourselves, attacks on our personnel will not be tolerated,” he said.

Two rockets were fired at the fortified area last month, though no casualties were reported. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blasts. One rocket exploded inside the Green Zone and another landed in the Tigris river, a statement from Iraqi security services said.

In May, a rocket fired from eastern Baghdad landed in the area close to the U.S. embassy, and was also not claimed. Such incidents have been rare but sporadic in the Iraqi capital in recent years.