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Contractor killed in rocket strike near US base in Iraq

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Broken glass is seen at the Bright Castle Motors building after reports of mortar shells landing near Erbil airport, in Erbil, Iraq February 15, 2021.

A rocket attack near a base housing American forces in northern Iraq killed a US-led coalition contractor and wounded at least eight other people on Monday night.

A US service member and two civilians were among the injured in the 9:30 p.m. strike in between the Irbil international airport in the semi-autonomous Kurdish-run territory and the base, authorities said.

Initial reports indicate at least three rockets struck the area.

Coalition spokesman Col. Wayne Marotto said in a statement the attack is under investigation. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the blast.

Marotto did not disclose the nationality of the dead contractor.

Iraqi President Barham Saleh condemned the attack in a statement posted online, calling it a “dangerous escalation.”

Rocket attacks have frequently targeted the US presence in Baghdad, but slowed down late last year ahead of President Joe Biden’s inauguration.

Former President Donald Trump had blamed the attacks on Iran-backed groups.

Last year, tensions soared between the US and Iran when an US drone attack killed top Iranian Gen. Qassim Soleimani.

With Post wires

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Police searching for motorcyclist accused of shooting Texas officer

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Police searching for motorcyclist accused of shooting Texas officer

Texas authorities are searching for a motorcyclist who allegedly shot a police officer during a traffic stop on Sunday night, a report said.

The suspected shooter was identified by authorities as 43-year-old Royce Wood. He allegedly shot a Rhome police officer in the leg near the intersection of Farm-to-Market roads 407 and 2264 in Wise County, NBC DFW reported.

Wood was driving a motorcycle with a female passenger when they were stopped. One of them matched the description of the suspect wanted in a Saturday night home invasion, authorities said.

After the shooting, Wood fled the scene on foot. The female passenger was taken into custody.

The injured officer was hospitalized in stable condition.

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Spectators injured by out-of-control vehicle at Texas mud racing event

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Spectators injured by out-of-control vehicle at Texas mud racing event

Eight people, including spectators, were injured Sunday at a Texas mud racing event after an out-of-control vehicle plowed through a guard rail, a report said.

Three of the victims were critically injured in the crash at a track in Fabens, KTSM reported, citing authorities. The other five people suffered non-life threatening injuries.

It was not immediately known what caused the driver to exit the track and crash. Three other vehicles were also hit, the report said.

A medevac helicopter was spotted at the event, along with several ambulances.

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Two children shot and critically injured in Cincinnati

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Two children shot and critically injured in Cincinnati

Two young children, ages 6 and 8, were among four victims in a shooting in Cincinnati on Saturday night, a report said.

The youngsters were critically injured and the other two victims — teen males — were left with non-life threatening wounds from the 6:15 p.m. shooting at McHenry and Cavanaugh avenues, WLWT reported, citing police.

The children were not the intended targets, according to Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley.

“We are all outraged that two children have been caught in the crossfire of a shooting last night,” Cranley said in a statement to the news outlet.

Police did not immediately reveal further information on the shooting, including any suspect descriptions or possible motives.

Cranley said the department is working on “strong leads.”

“We are confident the police will bring these violent criminals to justice,” the mayor said in his statement.

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