3 January will mark the one year anniversary of the assassination of Quds Force commander Qasem Soleimani in Baghdad in a US drone strike. Iran responded to the killing by launching ballistic missiles at two US bases in Iraq, and threatened further attacks. The Pentagon was put on alert earlier this month, citing a “heightened risk” from Iran.
The Islamic Republic of Iran may not need to resort to direct military action as a means to avenging its slain commander, Iraj Masjedi, Iran’s ambassador to Iraq has said.
The ambassador also warned Iran continues to reserve the right to take revenge against Washington over the “historic crime” of the murder of Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, a top Baghdad-allied Shia militia commander who died alongside the Quds commander in the 3 January attack in the Iraqi capital.
Masjedi also reiterated that contrary to the Trump administration’s claims, Iran and its allies were not behind the recent rocket attack on the US Embassy compound in Baghdad.
Last week, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused “Iran-backed militias” of responsibility for the attack on the Baghdad Green Zone,” characterizing the culprits as “violent and corrupt criminals” and demanding that they “cease their destabilizing actions.”
Iranian officials dismissed the US claims, indicating that Iran does not tolerate the targeting of diplomatic facilities and calling the timing of the US claims “suspicious.” Kata’ib Hezbollah, the…