As many as 12 missiles likely launched by Iran struck near a U.S. consulate building in Iraq’s northern Kurdish region on Saturday night. Initial reports said a U.S. base was hit, but the target was later revealed to be near a U.S. consulate building where U.S. personnel live and work.
A U.S. defense official later confirmed to Associated Press that the missiles landed near the consulate, but there was no indication that the consulate itself was intentionally targeted. No U.S. facilities or personnel suffered injury. The official added that the missiles were fired from neighboring Iran.
Multiple videos emerged on social media of missiles striking in the Kurdistan city of Erbil. Some social media users initially said the missile struck the U.S. base, due to early reporting and conflicting information that was later corrected.
Other social media users first said a U.S. consulate in the Kurdish region was targeted.
One social media user tweeted that six Iranian Fateh-110 were reportedly launched from the Khasabad military base, near the Iranian city of Tabriz. Fateh-110s are road-mobile surface to surface ballistic missiles. Fateh-110s may have been the missiles Iran used in strikes on U.S. bases on Jan. 8, 2020, in retaliation for the U.S. strike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad.
The social media user who tweeted reports of six Iranian Fateh-110 missiles launched from Tabriz subsequently tweeted a video, purportedly showing the missiles being launched. Neither the missiles nor the very could be confirmed Saturday night.
Another Twitter shared a possible geolocation from the video of the missile launches, pinpointing its location to somewhere near a facility operated by the Iranian automaker Khodro. If accurate, that geolocation data further implicates Iran in the missile launches.
The exact targets of these missiles strikes and the damage they’ve caused is not yet clear.
“Defense official says no reports of casualties so far in the missile attack on the US base in Erbil,” Politico reporter Paul McLeary tweeted.
The missile strikes come three days after two Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) officers were reportedly killed in an Israeli airstrike in Syria. Reuters reported the Iranian side has already vowed revenge for the strike.
The attack comes as the U.S. and Iran are still actively engaged in talks in Vienna, Austria, to restart the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).