Iraqi security forces on Friday repelled an attack by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) insurgents against an air base in Anbar province where U.S. Marines are training Iraqi troops, Iraqi and U.S. military officials said.
Militants from the militant group had attacked the Ain al-Asad base and the nearby town of al-Baghdadi a day earlier, leading to sporadic clashes in the town overnight.
Al-Baghdadi has been besieged for months by ISIS, which captured swathes of northern and western Iraq last year, prompting a campaign of U.S.-led air strikes and the deployment of hundreds of U.S. military advisers to the country.
A U.S. defense official said the Iraqi forces had stopped the attack and re-secured the facility.
“Coalition forces were several kilometers from the attack and at no stage were they under direct threat from this action,” the official said.
About 320 U.S. Marines are training members of the Iraqi 7th Division at the base, which has been struck by mortar fire on at least one previous occasion since December.
Iraq’s Defence Ministry said on its website the Iraqi army killed eight assailants near the base, which is about 85 km (50 miles) northwest of Ramadi.