The base's defence system had engaged "two fixed-wing suicide drones" that were shot down "without incident," said an official of the US-led international military coalition.

Footage of the destroyed drones showed clearly visible writing on the wing of one drone reading
Footage of the destroyed drones showed clearly visible writing on the wing of one drone reading "Soleimani's revenge". (AFP)

Two armed drones have been shot down as they approached an Iraqi military base hosting US forces near Baghdad's international airport.

Iraqi security sources said on Monday that nobody was hurt in the attack that came as Iran and its allies in Iraq marked the second anniversary of the assassination of top Iranian general Qasem Soleimani.

Commenting on the attack, an official of the US-led international military coalition said the base's defence system had engaged "two fixed-wing suicide drones. They were shot down without incident".

"This was a dangerous attack on a civilian airport," the coalition official said in a brief statement.

Footage provided by the coalition official showed debris of two fixed-wing drones destroyed in the attack, with writing clearly visible on the wing of one drone reading "Soleimani's revenge".

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. 

Armed groups that some Iraqi officials say are backed by Iran have claimed responsibility for similar incidents in the past.

"The Iraqis have opened an investigation," the coalition source said.

READ MORE: Iran has failed to avenge Qasem Soleimani

Missile and drone attacks

The nighttime strike two year ago, ordered by then-US president Donald Trump, hit a car in which Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al Muhandis were travelling on the edge of the airport.

The Hashd al Shaabi — a coalition of former paramilitary groups now integrated into the Iraqi state security apparatus — held a candle-lit vigil on Sunday at the airport for the two men killed.

The US said at the time that Soleimani was planning imminent action against US personnel in Iraq, a country long torn between the competing demands of its principal allies Washington and Tehran.

Five days after his killing, Iran fired missiles at an air base in Iraq housing US troops and another near Erbil in the country's north.

Since then dozens of rockets and roadside bombs have targeted US security, military and diplomatic sites across Iraq.

The US-led coalition on December 9 declared it had finished its combat mission in Iraq and that its around 2,500 troops would shift to a purely training and advisory role.

READ MORE: How Qasem Soleimani paved the way to his demise

Source: TRTWorld and agencies