A senior US official who was briefed on this weekend’s attack in the Iraqi town of Erbil told The New York Times on Monday that the building struck by Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) ballistic missiles also served as an Israeli training facility.
The US consulate in Erbil was not targeted, as was originally reported, but the IRGC doesn’t mind that it was nearby, the official said.
Later, however, New York Times correspondent Farnaz Fassihi amended her initial report and said an official in President Joe Biden’s administration told her colleague Eric Schmidt that the earlier claim was incorrect.
“A senior Biden administration official refuted the earlier comment by a US official, saying the administration believes that the building that was hit was a civilian residence only and did not also serve as an Israeli training site,” she tweeted.
Multiple missiles were fired towards the city of Erbil, which is located in northern Iraq, in the attack early Sunday morning.
The Saudi channel Al-Hadath reported that the missiles were launched from Iran and were in retaliation for the killing of two officers from the Revolutionary Guards in an air strike in Syria this week which was attributed to Israel.
Iran later claimed that attack was intended to target "secret Israeli bases" in Iraq.
Tehran also released a statement in which it claimed that security forced have uncovered an Israeli "spy network" in the west of the country.