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Four injured as C-130H overruns runway at Iraq base

Four service members were injured Monday when a C-130H Hercules overran the runway while landing at Camp Taji, Iraq, and crashed into a wall, sparking a fire.

The service members’ injuries were not life-threatening, and they are being treated at the base’s medical facility, according to a release by Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve.

There were seven crew members and 26 passengers aboard the flight, an Iraqi official said. Among the injured were two pilots. The official spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations.

The task force, which is in charge of anti-Islamic State operations in the Middle East, said enemy action is not suspected, and that the accident is under investigation.

The C-130 is now deployed to the 386th Air Expeditionary Wing at Ali Al Salem Air Base, Kuwait, the release said.

The crash at the base, which is north of Baghdad, happened at about 10:10 p.m. Iraq time, the release said. The plane crashed into a wall, resulting in sustained structural damage to the aircraft, and a small fire broke out.

The air field’s crash, fire and rescue team responded within four minutes, the release said.

“The quick actions of the airfield crash, fire and rescue team helped patients, and limited damage to equipment and infrastructure,” the release said.

Separately, Iraq’s military said a missile struck near Baghdad’s airport, which includes a military base frequented by U.S. troops. The statement said the missile was launched from an area south of the airport.

Security forces have initiated a search operation to uncover the perpetrators, the statement said. An Iraqi security official said the rocket struck close to the headquarters of the U.S.-led coalition.

The attack is the first to target the airport since May 6 when three katyusha rockets struck near its military sector. That attack did not cause any casualties.

The rockets had struck close to Iraqi forces at the military airport, another near Camp Cropper, once a U.S. detention facility, and the last near to where U.S. forces are stationed at the base.

The U.S. has accused Iran-backed militias of carrying out such attacks in the past. Several attacks targeted U.S. interests early in March, including three military bases known to house U.S. troops. The U.S.-led coalition has withdrawn from several bases across Iraq in a planned drawdown.

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