Baghdad Claims ‘Enemy’ Warplane Hit in Northern Iraq, Pentagon Issues Denial
Iraq said on Monday that its anti-aircraft system hit an "enemy" US or British plane flying over the northern exclusion zone, but the Pentagon denied the claim, said AFP.
Iraq's air defense system "repulsed the enemy aircraft, which were raiding the Dohuk, Erbil and Niniv provinces," an Iraqi military official said, cited by AFP.
"Indications are that one of the planes was hit."
But the claim was denied by Lt. Col. Catherine Abbott, a Pentagon spokeswoman, who said, "There is no truth to the report."
On June 21, Pentagon officials said their "best guess" was that Iraq had fired a surface-to-air missile at a US aircraft patrolling Kuwait, allegedly the first time Baghdad has fired outside their own airspace since the 1991 Gulf War.
The missile failed to hit the US target, and American patrols were continuing normally, a Pentagon official said at the time.
The missile was fired in the direction of a Navy E-2 Hawkeye from the aircraft carrier USS Constellation, and went several miles into Kuwaiti airspace, he said.
The United States did not immediately retaliate because of poor visibility and the lack of an electronic signal indicating the origin of the missile, he said.
The United States and Britain patrol no-fly zones over northern and southern Iraq that were imposed after the Gulf War – Albwaba.com
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