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Militiamen breach US Embassy in Baghdad; Trump blames Iran

The group was angered over U.S. airstrikes targeting the Iran-backed militia on Sunday.
Credit: AP
Iraqi security forces stand guard in front of the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, Iraq, Tuesday, Dec. 31, 2019. Dozens of angry Iraqi Shiite militia supporters broke into the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad on Tuesday after smashing a main door and setting fire to a reception area, prompting tear gas and sounds of gunfire. (AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)

Dozens of Iraqi Shiite militiamen and their supporters have broken into the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad, smashing a main door and setting fire to a reception area.

The mob was angered over deadly U.S. airstrikes that targeting the Iran-backed militia on Sunday. In the violence on Tuesday, U.S. guards fired tear gas as palls of smoke rose over the compound.

President Donald Trump blamed Iran for the embassy breach and said they will be held "fully responsible." The developments represent a major downturn in Iraq-U.S. relations that could further undermine U.S. influence in the region and also weaken Washington's hand in its maximum pressure campaign against Iran.