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First Step of Retaliation: Iran’s Missiles Shower US Occupation Bases in Iraq

First Step of Retaliation: Iran’s Missiles Shower US Occupation Bases in Iraq
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By Staff, Agencies

Announcing the first step of retaliation to the US assassination of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guard Corps’ Quds Force Commander Lieutenant General Martyr Qassem Soleimani, the IRGC said on Wednesday it targeted two US occupation airbases in Iraq, including the US airbase of Ain al-Assad in Anbar province in western Iraq.

The attack on the US major air base in Iraq came after Iran made the pledged to retaliate to the US crime.

“Tens of surface-to-surface missiles” were fired at the strategic airbase but the exact number is unknown now.

US base in Iraq's northern region of Erbil was also among targets.

The attacks were later confirmed by the US officials.

The IRGC added that it would release more details about the strike.

The strike came as no surprise since Iran had vowed to take a “harsh revenge”.

Sirens were reportedly heard and American helicopters flew over the airbase and the total alert was activated.

US President Donald Trump was being briefed about the retaliatory strikes.

"We are aware of the reports of attacks on US facilities in Iraq. The President has been briefed and is monitoring the situation closely and consulting with his national security team," White House spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.

The Pentagon claimed that it would take necessary measures to protect the US military forces amid heightened tensions in the region.

"We are working on initial battle damage assessments," Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said in statement, adding that the bases targeted were at al-Assad air base and another in Erbil, the capital of Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdistan region.

"At approximately 5.30 pm [2230 GMT] on January 7, Iran launched more than a dozen ballistic missiles against US military and coalition forces in Iraq," Assistant to the US War Secretary for Public Affairs Jonathan Hoffman said in a statement.

"It is clear that these missiles were launched from Iran and targeted at least two Iraqi military bases hosting US military and coalition personnel at Al-Assad and Irbil."

Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units [PMU] resistance group, better known as Hashd al-Shaabi forces, announced the start of Crushing Response Operation to the United States.

The White House was preparing for an address to the US nation by the American commander in chief, but it was announced later that the speech has been called off.

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