IRAQ: Iran launches ballistic missiles at Erbil

ERBIL, Iraq — As many as 12 ballistic missiles were launched at the city of Erbil, the capital of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, at approximately 01:00 on Sunday morning.

Footage shared on social media appeared to show the impact of several missiles near a U.S. military facility and the U.S. Consulate.

Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has claimed responsibility for the attack. Iranian state television said that the missiles targeted “secret Israeli bases”. The Wall Street Journal, citing a source in the American military, reported that the missiles were indeed launched from a military base inside Iran. Given the size of the explosions, the strikes were likely carried out using Fateh-110 ballistic missiles, rather than the smaller rockets or artillery rounds employed in prior attacks on U.S. facilities in Iraq.

Nothing of consequence was struck, according to US and Iraqi authorities, and there were no deaths. “There is no damage or casualties at any U.S. Government facility,” said a spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State. “The incident is being investigated by the government of Iraq and the Kurdish Regional Government and we refer you to them for comment. We condemn this outrageous attack and display of violence.”

According to U.S. officials, the attack was likely in retaliation to an Israeli air strike in Syria on Monday which killed two members of the IRGC.

Iraqi Prime Minister, Mustafa al-Khademi condemned the attack, saying that it was an infringement on the security of the Iraqi people and the people of Erbil and pledged to investigate the attack.

The attack comes as the U.S., Iran, and other countries meet in Vienna to discuss Iran’s nuclear program in the hopes of reaching a new agreement following the U.S.’s exit from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in 2018.