One American service member was killed and another was wounded during an improvised explosive strike Sunday in Iraq, raising to at least 13 the number of U.S. troops killed while fighting the Islamic State there and in neighboring Syria.
U.S. military officials have not disclosed either service member’s name, pending family notifications, nor have they said where in Iraq the incident occurred. Those speaking with The Washington Post on the condition of anonymity confirmed only that the attack involved Americans.
In a statement, the U.S.-led coalition in Baghdad indicated that the explosive targeted a vehicle.
Since January, at least five U.S. troops have been killed in action as part of the Pentagon’s operation to oust the Islamic State from its main strongholds, according to Defense Department data. Another 25 have been wounded by hostile action.
Sunday’s attack comes one week after a French special operations soldier was killed battling the militant group, marking that nation’s first combat fatality in Iraq and Syria – though officials did not specify where it occurred.
After defeating the Islamic State in the northern city of Mosul and then Tal Afar, U.S.-backed Iraqi forces have turned their attention to Hawijah, a densely populated city north of Baghdad.
Another operation is underway in Ramadi, the capital of Anbar province, where the Islamic State was ousted in February 2016.
(c) 2017, The Washington Post · Alex Horton, Dan Lamothe