Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ elite Quds Force, has been killed by the United States forces.
The top Iranian General was killed “at the direction” of Donald Trump, the United States President.
This online news platform understands that the development is coming days after protesters attacked the US embassy in Baghdad, clashing with US forces at the scene.
Speaking on Soleimani’s death, a Pentagon statement said, “At the direction of the President, the US military has taken decisive defensive action to protect US personnel abroad by killing Qasem Soleimani.”
The statement added that General Soleimani approved the attacks on the embassy.
“This strike was aimed at deterring future Iranian attack plans. The United States will continue to take all necessary action to protect our people and our interests wherever they are around the world,” the statement added.
Reports in the US media say Soleimani was in a car at Baghdad airport with local Iran-backed militias when a US airstrike hit him.
It was learned that General Soleimani had reportedly flown in from Lebanon or Syria before the incident took place.
Also, Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said Iraqi militia leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis was among those killed.
Reacting to the attack, Javad Zarif, Iran’s Foreign Minister, said the move was “extremely dangerous and a foolish escalation.”
“The US’ act of international terrorism, targeting & assassinating General Soleimani—THE most effective force fighting Daesh (ISIS), Al Nusrah, Al Qaeda et al—is extremely dangerous & a foolish escalation,” Zarif tweeted.
The US' act of international terrorism, targeting & assassinating General Soleimani—THE most effective force fighting Daesh (ISIS), Al Nusrah, Al Qaeda et al—is extremely dangerous & a foolish escalation.
The US bears responsibility for all consequences of its rogue adventurism.
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) January 3, 2020