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US Assures Iran It "Had No Involvement" In Embassy Strike As IDF Claims Only...

• https://www.zerohedge.com, by Tyler Durden

The Biden administration was notified just minutes before the major Israeli airstrikes on the Iranian Embassy complex in Damascus on Monday, US and Israeli officials have told Axios; however, the Israeli side wasn't asking for a greenlight, the report emphasizes. 

The US on Tuesday directly communicated to Iran that it "had no involvement" or advanced knowledge of the strike on the embassy annex which killed top Iranian commanders, including Brig. Gen. Mohammad Reza Zahedi, who reportedly oversaw IRGC Quds Force operations in Syria and Lebanon.

Crucially, Zahedi's death marks the highest ranking Iranian official killed since the 2020 US assassination of Qassem Soleimani by drone strike outside the Baghdad airport. In the aftermath of the attack on the embassy annex the death toll had risen to eleven. Iranian state television has since said that included among these were 6 Syrian citizens killed.

A National Security Council (NSC) spokesperson has been cited by Axios as underscoring that the United States "had no involvement in the [Israeli] strike and we did not know about it ahead of time."

Iranian state TV described that the attack "was carried out by F-35 fighter jets" which fired six missiles at the building, leaving it flattened. It housed the embassy's consular section as well as the residence of ambassador Hossein Akbari, who apparently wasn't there at the time and thus was unharmed.

Iran and Hezbollah have vowed revenge and that this will be "punished" while Russia has also expressed outraged, as we reported earlier. Saudi Arabia's foreign ministry on Tuesday expressed "the Kingdom's categorical rejection of targeting diplomatic facilities for any justification, and under any pretext."

A strike against an embassy which is supposed to be 'protected' by international diplomatic norms upheld by the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations is unprecedented and so marks a massive escalation by Israel. 

There are simply no examples in all of recent history of a sovereign nation's military intentionally targeting the embassy and diplomatic facilities of another sovereign country. The one exceptional historical instance is NATO bombing the Chinese embassy in Belgrade in 1999, which killed 3 Chinese journalists, but which the US said was inadvertent, resulting in then President Clinton issuing a formal apology to the Chinese government.


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