The US embassy compound in Baghdad was attacked on Dec. 31, 2019, by crowds protesting the American airstrikes against bases of Kataib Hezbollah, a Shiite militia, in Syria and Iraq. The airstrikes were in retaliation after American troops were wounded and a contractor was killed in a rocket attack in Kirkuk on Dec. 27.
No diplomatic staff inside the embassy were injured, although the walls and reception area of the compound were damaged. The US was able to regain control by Jan. 1 after calling in Marine forces from Kuwait.
The attack further fueled tensions between the US and Iran, which is a primary backer of Kataib Hezbollah. The US military issued a strong warning that it would preemptively strike Iranian-backed militias if there was any indication that more attacks against American personnel were planned. Early on Friday, a powerful Iranian general was killed in a US airstrike near Baghdad's international airport.