Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said Sunday they did not aim to kill US troops when firing a wave of missiles last week at Iraqi bases hosting American forces. A volley of rockets hit an airbase in Iraq hosting US troops on Sunday injuring four Iraqi soldiers. The missile attack targeted the Al-Balad airbase in north of Baghdad that also hosts American soldiers. The Iraqi military confirmed the reports saying eight Katyusha-type rockets landed on Al-Balad airbase, wounding two Iraqi officers and two airmen.
“Our aim was not really to kill enemy soldiers. That was not important,” the Guards’ commander, Hossein Salami, told parliament, referring to Wednesday’s missile operation launched to avenge the killing of a top Iranian general.
“The physical destruction (caused by the missiles) was just because we wanted to say that we are so much more superior to the enemy (and) that we can hit any point we choose, " he added, in a speech aired on state television.
Iran's Revolutionary Guards had on Wednesday had launched 22 ballistic missiles at two US targets in Iraq in retaliation for the killing of Quds Force leader Qasem Soleimani. However, US President Donald Trump had confirmed there were no casualties from attack. He had also said that "Iran appears to be standing down" after that attack.
Meanwhile, riot police were deployed in parts of Tehran after tear gas was used to clear the streets of protesters. Dozens of people have taken to the streets after government admitted it had mistakenly shot down a passenger jet killing all 176 people on board. Social media was flooded with images of demonstrators taking to the streets in the capital and other cities.
Iran has invited experts from Canada, France, Ukraine and the United States to take part in the investigation into the air disaster.
On the other hand, pro-regime protesters gathered outside the UK embassy calling for its closure after the British ambassador to Iran was briefly detained on Saturday evening after leaving the site of a demonstration.