Qasem Soleimani: Strike was to 'stop war', says Trump

04 Janvier, 2020, 05:34 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • A boy carries a portrait of Iranian Revolutionary Guard Gen. Qassim Suleimani who was killed in the U.S. airstrike in Iraq prior to the Friday prayers in Tehran Iran Friday Jan. 3 2020. Iran has vowed

Five members of an Iranian-backed militia have been killed in an airstrike north of Baghdad, Iraqi officials have said.

Calling the U.S. killing of General Qassem Soleimani "criminal" and example of terrorism, the Iranian envoy to the United Nations said his country reserved the right to act in self-defense and threatened vengeance in USA media interviews.

The administration plans to deploy 4,000 additional troops to the Middle East in the aftermath of Soleimani's death.

A police source told AFP news agency that the bombardment there hit a Hashd convoy and left "dead and wounded" without providing a specific toll.

The US has not claimed responsibility for this morning's strike.

President Trump defended the strike on Friday, saying the Iranian general was "hated and feared within the country" and "should have been taken out many years ago".

The Quds Force, an elite unit of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), reported directly to the ayatollah and Soleimani was hailed as a heroic national figure.

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The US killed Soleimani in an overnight attack in Iraq authorised by President Donald Trump.

In a statement following Soleimani's death, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said: "His departure to God does not end his path or his mission, but a forceful revenge awaits the criminals who have his blood and the blood of the other martyrs last night on their hands".

The US president stated that his intention was "to stop a war" rather than start one.

Joe Biden criticised Donald Trump's decision to assassinate Qassem Soleimani.

The State Department warned all Americans in Iraq to leave the country "immediately" after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the strike was carried out to disrupt an "imminent" threat.

The United States' killing of Iran's most prominent military commander, Qassem Soleimani, is virtual to starting a war and "the response for a military action is a military action", Iran's UN ambassador has said.

"He was actively plotting in the region to take actions - a big action as he described it - that would have put dozens if not hundreds of American lives at risk".

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