The US Army has killed a senior Iranian officer with missile attack in Iraq. The death of General Soleimani of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard is confirmed by Iran and the US Department of Defense.
According to the Pentagon, the liquidation at Baghdad International Airport was carried out by order of President Trump. A drone fired rockets at cars at a freight terminal.
The American president has placed an image of an American flag on Twitter.
Soleimani was the leader of the Quds brigade, an elite unit within the Revolutionary Guard. The Iranian Foreign Minister calls the murder “exceptionally dangerous and a stupid escalation”. He says the US is responsible for all the consequences of this “villainous adventurism.”
US correspondent Arjen van der Horst calls it a “huge escalation” of tensions between the US and Iran, which had already been sustained in recent weeks. The Pentagon held Soleimani responsible for an attack in Kirkuk in northern Iraq, in which an American soldier was killed. As a result, the Minister of Defense said on Thursday “the game has changed”. “Now we know those words were not an empty threat.”
In a statement, the White House and the Pentagon say that Soleimani “actively developed plans to attack US diplomats and army people in Iraq and in the region.” There is therefore talk of a defensive action.
He is held responsible by the Americans for the deaths of hundreds of Americans and members of the international coalition. In recent months he has orchestrated attacks on bases in Iraq. He would also have approved the attack on the US embassy in Iraq last Wednesday.