WASHINGTON, January 8. /TASS/. US President Donald Trump is closely monitoring the situation with the reported missile attacks on US military facilities in Iraq, White House Spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said in a statement on Wednesday.
"We are aware of the reports of attacks on US facilities in Iraq," the statement reads. "The president has been briefed and is monitoring the situation closely and consulting with his national security team."
Assistant to the US Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs Jonathan Hoffman said in a statement on early Wednesday that "Iran launched more than a dozen ballistic missiles against US military and coalition forces in Iraq," adding that "missiles were launched from Iran and targeted at least two Iraqi military bases hosting U.S. military and coalition personnel at Al-Assad and Irbil."
The statement did not specify the damage or casualties following the missile attacks on the facilities saying "We are working on initial battle damage assessments."
The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) officially claimed responsibility for the missile attacks stating that US forces, which are involved in acts of aggression against Iran, would be subjected to military attacks.
Iran’s news agency ISNA quoted a statement from the IRGC as saying that the operation in Iraq was code-named ‘Martyr Soleimani.’
"During the operation code-named Martyr Soleimani, soldiers of the IRGC armed forces launched dozens of ground-to-ground missiles and destroyed the US Air Force base," the IRGC stated.
The situation in the Middle East deteriorated sharply after the Pentagon announced on January 3 that Commander of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (the elite wing of the Iranian military) General Qasem Soleimani had been killed in a US airstrike near Baghdad airport. The missile strike came on order of US President Donald Trump.
According to the US Administration, the operation was defensive, as it was aimed at protecting US troops stationed in the Middle East. According to Washington, the attacks planned by the Iranian general could have led to the deaths of hundreds of Americans and Iraqis.
After the attack, Iran’s Supreme National Security Council vowed at an emergency session to exact "severe revenge" on those involved in the killing of Soleimani, blaming the US for the attack. In a telephone call with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif slammed the attack as an act of terrorism by the US.