Iran attacks bases housing US troops
There are casualties among the Iraqis at Ain al-Asad airbase following the attack early Wednesday local time, an Iraqi security source tells CNN.
At this stage, it is unknown whether those causalities are wounded or killed; also unknown are the numbers of casualties.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defense Esper have just arrived at the White House.
Pompeo was here earlier but left around 4:30 p.m. ET.
In the past half hour, US Defense Secretary Mark Esper’s office called the office of the Prime Minister of Iraq, according to a diplomatic source.
There were difficulties getting through -- as it is indeed the middle of the night. They managed to get through, but it’s unclear who was actually on either end of the line, but source says there has been “communication between the US and Iraqi governments at the highest level."
US Special Representative for Iran, Brian Hook, was almost an hour and a half late to speak at an event in Los Angeles on Tuesday. Event organizers said that he was on the phone with Washington.
Minutes after he started speaking, Hook was handed a note by one of the event organizers.
It is unclear what that message said, but he only took one more question following the note and left the podium at 5:35 p.m. ET.
The Pentagon said “Iran launched more than a dozen ballistic missiles” at approximately 5:30 p.m. ET at two military bases housing US troops.
The Pentagon confirmed that Iran launched missiles at US military and coalition forces in Iraq.
The Pentagon said Iran fired more than a dozen missiles.
"It is clear that these 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," Jonathan Hoffman, assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs, said in a statement.
"We are working on initial battle damage assessments," he added.
The bases, he said, have been on high alert "due to indications that the Iranian regime planned to attack our forces and interests in the region."
"As we evaluate the situation and our response, we will take all necessary measures to protect and defend U.S. personnel, partners, and allies in the region," the Pentagon said.
Iran's top nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, who is also a politician and representative of the Supreme Leader, tweeted an image of the Iranian flag following reports of attacks on al-Asad air base.
Iran’s state-run news Press TV reports the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) targeted the US airbase of Ain al-Asad in Anbar province in western Iraq.
The attack comes after a vow to retaliate "the US assassination of top Iranian anti-terror commander, Lt. Gen. Qassem Soleimani."
"Tens of surface-to-surface missiles" were fired at the strategic air base. The attack was later confirmed by the White House, the report said.
The IRGC added that it would release more details about the strike.
A US defense official confirms to CNN that there has been some sort of attack on al-Asad air base where US troops are stationed. The official did not have any more details
During a meeting with key House Democrats on Tuesday night, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was discussing the situation in Iran when she was handed a note with news of a rocket attack on a US military base in Iraq, lawmakers who attended the meeting said.
Rep. Dan Kildee said she paused the discussion to alert the members of the Steering Committee of the news.
“Pray,” Pelosi told members, according to Rep. Debbie Dingell.
Rep. Ted Lieu added that Pelosi said it is a serious time.