The head of Iran's elite Quds Force, General Qassem Soleimani, has been killed alongside six others following a US airstrike at Baghdad's international airport on Friday. Besides Soleimani, Iraqi militia commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis was also killed in the attack.
After Pentagon confirmed reports of killing of Iran Revolutionary Guards commander, a video of Soleimani threatening Trump went viral on social media. In the video Soleimani can be heard saying: "Let me tell you, Mr. Trump the gambler you should know that we are near you, in places that don't come to your mind. We are near you in place that you can't even imagine."
US President Donald Trump ordered the killing of Iran Revolutionary Guards commander Qasem Soleimani, who died in Baghdad "in a decisive defensive action to protect US personnel abroad," the Pentagon said. "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," the Department of Defence said.
Following Soleimani's death, Trump tweeted an image of the US flag without any further explanation. The strike, which occurred at Baghdad's international airport on Friday in Iraq, also killed the deputy chief of Iraq's powerful Hashed al-Shaabi paramilitary force. A pro-Iran mob this week laid siege to the US embassy following deadly American air strikes on a hardline Hashed faction.
The US had called the strikes in response to a rocket attack days earlier that had killed an American contractor working in Iraq. The Baghdad airport was hit in a volley of missiles just after midnight Friday, Iraq's military had announced.
(Inputs from Agencies)