The United States military has conducted an airstrike killing Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Quds Force commander General Qasem Soleimani.
“At the direction of the President, the US military has taken decisive defensive action to protect US personnel abroad by killing Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Quds Force, a US-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization,” the US Department of Defense said on January 2.
It noted that the 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 Pentagon added.
It said that General Soleimani was actively developing plans to attack American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region.
“General Soleimani and his Quds Force were responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American and coalition service members and the wounding of thousands more. He had orchestrated attacks on coalition bases in Iraq over the last several months – including the attack on December 27th – culminating in the death and wounding of additional American and Iraqi personnel,” it explained.
“General Soleimani also approved the attacks on the US Embassy in Baghdad that took place this week,” it said.