Newstalk
Newstalk

06.44 8 Jan 2020


Share this article


Iran's ballistic missile attacks on US targets in Iraq was the "first step" and Tehran will not spare American troops, an Iranian Revolutionary Guard commander has warned.

State TV quoted the official as saying: "The missile attacks today were just the first step. (US President Donald) should think about withdrawing its troops from the region and not to leave them within our reach."

Fifteen missiles were fired at two Iraq bases housing US and coalition troops following the killing of the country's top general.

Tehran said the attacks were revenge for the killing of General Qassem Soleimani, whose funeral in his hometown on Tuesday prompted angry calls to avenge his death.

The missiles are reported to have been fired by the Revolutionary Guard aerospace division and the operation was named "Marytr Soleimani".

Iran's Revolutionary Guard then warned the US and its regional allies against retaliating over the missile attack in Iraq.

It issued the warning via a statement carried by Iran's State-run IRNA news agency.

"We are warning all American allies, who gave their bases to its terrorist army, that any territory that is the starting point of aggressive acts against Iran will be targeted," it said. It also threatened Israel.

Reacting to the missile attack US President Trump tweeted: "All is well! Missiles launched from Iran at two military bases located in Iraq. Assessment of casualties & damages taking place now.

"So far, so good! We have the most powerful and well equipped military anywhere in the world, by far! I will be making a statement tomorrow morning."

It is not clear yet what casualties, if any, the strikes caused.

Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said his country "took & concluded proportionate measures in self-defense under Article 51 of UN Charter"

He added: "We do not seek escalation or war, but will defend ourselves against any aggression."

A US government statement said: "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 Erbil.

"We are working on initial battle damage assessments.

"These bases have been on high alert due to indications that the Iranian regime planned to attack our forces and interests in the region.

"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."

Meanwhile, the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) says it will ban US carriers from operating in the airspace over Iraq, Iran, the Gulf of Oman and the waters between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Al Asad air base, in Iraq's western Anbar province, was first used by American forces after the 2003 US-led invasion that toppled dictator Saddam Hussein.

It later saw American troops stationed there amid the fight against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.

The EU has called an extraordinary Foreign Affairs Council meeting scheduled for this Friday.

Speaking ahead of the strikes on Tuesday, the EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell said: "Worried as we are by the situation in Libya and in Iran, we have called for an extraordinary Foreign Affairs Council scheduled for this Friday."

"You also know about the Iran situation. It has not been the subject of this meeting, but it will be the subject of the extraordinary Foreign Affairs Council on next Friday."

Main image: This aerial photo taken from a helicopter shows Ain al-Asad air base in the western Anbar desert, Iraq on December 29th, 2019 | Image: Nasser Nasser/AP/Press Association Images


Share this article


Read more about

Al Asad Air Base Bases Federal Aviation Administration Foreign Affairs Council Iran Iraw Marytr Soleimani Missile Attacks President Trump Qassem Soleimani Revolutionary Guard Tehran US Troops

Most Popular

Live: Title

Now playing

00:00:00 / 00:00:00
Added to queue
Removed from queue

On Air

Share

Share


Up next

Episode title
Show
Duration

You currently have no podcasts in your queue.

Go to podcasts

On Air

Breakfast Briefing

Breakfast Briefing

06:00-06:30

Share

Up next

BREAKFAST BUSINESS

BREAKFAST BUSINESS

06:30-07:00

Share

NEWSTALK BREAKFAST

NEWSTALK BREAKFAST

07:00-09:00

Share

THE PAT KENNY SHOW

THE PAT KENNY SHOW

09:00-12:00

Share

LUNCHTIME LIVE

LUNCHTIME LIVE

12:00-14:00

Share

MONCRIEFF

MONCRIEFF

14:00-16:00

Share

THE HARD SHOULDER

THE HARD SHOULDER

16:00-19:00

Share

OFF THE BALL

OFF THE BALL

19:00-22:00

Share

THE TOM DUNNE SHOW

THE TOM DUNNE SHOW

22:00-00:00

Share

BEST OF NEWSTALK

BEST OF NEWSTALK

00:00-06:00

Share

BREAKFAST BRIEFING

BREAKFAST BRIEFING

06:00-06:30

Share

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

Share on