Pentagon: Iran attacks two airbases hosting U.S. forces in Iraq

2020-01-08 09:16:50CGTN Editor : Feng Shuang ECNS App Download

Iran fired "more than a dozen" ballistic missiles at two airbases in Iraq where U.S. and coalition forces are based, the Pentagon confirmed Wednesday.

What happened?

Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) said it started an attack on an airbase in western Iraq hosting U.S. troops on Wednesday, according to state television.

"The brave soldiers of IRGC's aerospace unit have launched a successful attack with tens of ballistic missiles on al-Asad military base in the name of martyr Gen. Qasem Soleimani," the IRGC said in a statement.

At least ten rockets have attacked Ain al-Asad airbase which holds U.S. forces in Iraq, media reports have said.

"The fierce revenge by the Revolutionary Guards has begun," the statement added.

Sirens have been heard and U.S. helicopters were flying over the airbase with a total alert activated, according to media reports.

The Pentagon has responded to attack. It confirmed in a statement that Iran launched more than a dozen ballistic missiles against the U.S. military, targeting two Iraqi bases at Al-Assad and Irbil which host U.S. military and coalition personnel, adding that the U.S. will take all necessary measures to protect and defend U.S. personnel, partners, and allies in the region.

The casualties or extent of the damage caused by the attack was not immediately clear, as tension mounted between Washington and Tehran following the U.S. killing on Friday of Iranian military commander Qassem Soleimani.

The New York Times cited Iraq's Joint Military Command saying that the attack began at 1:20 a.m. local time, the time that Suleimani was killed on Friday.

White House is monitoring the situation

The White House has said that it is aware of reports of the attacks. U.S. President Donald Trump has been briefed and is monitoring the situation.

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

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