Iran launched missile attacks on US-led forces in Iraq early on Wednesday in retaliation for the US drone strike on an Iranian commander whose killing last week raised fears of a wider war in the Middle East.
Iran fired more than a dozen ballistic missiles from its territory against at least two Iraqi facilities hosting US-led coalition personnel at about 1:30am (2230 GMT on Tuesday), the US military said.
Iranian officials said their country did not want a war and its strikes “concluded” its response to Friday’s killing of Qassem Soleimani, a powerful general whose burial in Iran after days of mourning was completed almost at the same time as Iran’s missile launches.
Iranian officials said their country did not want a war and its strikes 'concluded' its response to Friday’s killing of Qassem Soleimani
US President Donald Trump said in a tweet that an assessment of casualties and damage from the strikes was under way and that he would make a statement on Wednesday morning.
“All is well!” Trump, who visited one of the targeted sites, Ain al-Asad air base, in December 2018, said on Twitter.
One source said early indications were of no US casualties. Other US officials declined to comment.
Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps confirmed they fired the missiles in retaliation for last week’s killing of Qassem Soleimani, according to a statement on state media.
The force advised the United States to withdraw its troops from the region to prevent more deaths and warned US allies including Israel not to allow attacks from their territories.
Iranian television reported a senior official in the Iranian Supreme Leader’s office as saying the missile attacks were the “weakest” of several retaliation scenarios.
Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said the bases targeted were al-Asad air base and another facility in Erbil, Iraq.
“As we evaluate the situation and our response, we will take all necessary measures to protect and defend US personnel, partners, and allies in the region,” Hoffman said.