Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (2024)

Table of Contents
'What happened last night was not a strike,' Iran foreign minister says Israel's long-term credit rating downgraded by S&P Israel fired 3 missiles into Iran, officials say Missile remnants found southwest of Baghdad Hezbollah says it targeted Israeli soldiers and equipment Israel gave U.S. last-minute info about drone action on Iran, Italian foreign minister says at G7 United Airlines cancels flights to Israel until May 2 Jordan's foreign affairs minister: 'The Israeli-Iranian escalation must stop' Israel missiles hit defense positions in southern Syria, state media reports France calls for 'de-escalation and restraint' All sides must ‘refrain from further action,’ E.U. Commission president says U.S. and Israeli officials discuss Iran and Rafah Egypt warns of 'expanding consequences' in the region 'High time' to stop the escalation, U.N. Secretary General says Iran says it will review its nuclear doctrine after Israel attack Israeli president delivers a speech without mentioning strike Targeting a nuclear facility is ‘playing with fire,’ head of U.N. nuclear watchdog says Iranian political analyst plays down strikes China says it opposes any further escalation of tensions Blinken: U.S. not involved 'in any offensive operations' Suspected Iranian spy ship sails home No signs of panic in Israel after strikes on Iran British PM reaffirms Israel’s right to self-defense 'Government of Iran wants to destroy Israel forever,' Biden warned recently CIA director: Iranian attack on Israel was a ‘spectacular failure’ Analysis: Silence from Israeli government is telling Iran says it shot down three small drones over Isfahan S&P cuts Israel’s credit rating on heightened geopolitical risk Oman condemns what it calls ‘Israeli attack’ on Iran Israeli officials largely silent; national security minister calls strike ‘feeble’ Reporters in Iran say life is normal in Isfahan U.S. vetoes widely supported resolution backing full U.N. membership for Palestine U.N. secretary-general called for ‘maximum restraint’ to prevent wider war Iranian state media appears to downplay impact of strike Video appears to show airstrike over Iran IAEA: No damage to Iran’s nuclear facilities Biden imposes sanctions on Iran after drone and missile attack on Israel Hezbollah's second-in-command insists it isn't seeking war Iran flights resume after reports of Israel strike U.S. Embassy in Israel restricts movement of employees after strike ‘A lot will depend on how much damage was done,’ ex-CIA director Brennan says Israel carried out a limited military strike, source says Congressional reactions start rolling in Strike in Iran comes on its supreme leader's birthday Tehran's Mehrabad Airport says flights are suspended Tehran vowed 'decisive, definitive and regretful' response before strike Nuclear sites in Isfahan are safe, Iranian state media says Iran's weekend retaliatory strike was country's first direct military assault on Israel U.S. not involved in strike in Iran, source says No comment from Netanyahu's office Flights suspended from Tehran, Isfahan and Shiraz, Iran state news says Israel has carried out operation in Iran tonight, source says U.S. has said it will defend Israel, not engage in offensive operations against Iran Iran’s foreign minister warned today of response to any force

'What happened last night was not a strike,' Iran foreign minister says

Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (1)

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Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (2)

Tom Llamas

Rich Schapiro

Dan De Luce

Tom Llamas, Rich Schapiro and Dan De Luce

Iran’s foreign minister on Friday refused to acknowledge that Israel was behindthe recent attack on his countryand described the weapons that were used as more like children’s toys.

“What happened last night was not a strike,” the foreign minister, Hossein Amirabdollahian, said in an interview with NBC News’ Tom Llamas. “They were more like toys that our children play withnot drones.”

Amirabdollahian, who spoke to NBC News in New York where he was attending a U.N. Security Council session, said Iran was not planning to respond unless Israel launches a significant attack.

He said Israel had not taken responsibility for the strikes on Thursday and his country was still investigating what happened.

Read the full story here.

Israel's long-term credit rating downgraded by S&P

The Associated Press

Israel’s long-term credit rating is being downgraded by S&P, which cited the risk of military escalation with Iran. It is the second major U.S. credit ratings agency to do so.

There was an apparent drone attack at a major air base and a nuclear site near the central city of Isfahan early this morning, which is suspected of being part of an Israeli retaliation for Tehran’s unprecedented drone-and-missile assault on the country days ago.

S&P’s downgrade was issued shortly before the strike in Iran and almost three months after Moody’s, another major U.S. credit agency, downgraded Israel’s rating because of o the “ongoing military conflict with Hamas.”

S&P Global Ratings lowered its long-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit ratings on Israel to ‘A+’ from ‘AA-’ and the short-term ratings to ‘A-1’ from ‘A-1+.’


Israel fired 3 missiles into Iran, officials say

Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (4)

Courtney Kube

Mosheh Gains

Courtney Kube and Mosheh Gains

Israel fired three air-launched ballistic missiles into Iran overnight, targeting an Iranian airbase, according to officials familiar with the operation.

The officials rejected reports that Israel also struck a target near Baghdad as part of last night’s response, however, missile parts found on the ground in Iraq were related to Israel’s strikes on Iran, they say.

The officials said that part of an Israeli missile that was being fired into Iran fell just outside Baghdad when the missile separated after launch. There was not an explosion, just a part of the missile body that fell from the sky.

Missile remnants found southwest of Baghdad

The Associated Press

BAGHDAD — Remnants of a missile were found today near Latifiya, southwest of Baghdad.

It wasn’t immediately clear whether the missile was part of an Israeli attack on Iran or part of last weekend’s Iranian attack on Israel. In photographs from the scene published by local media, it appeared to be a air-to-surface missile. There were no reports of Iran using air-to-surface missiles in Saturday’s barrage, which included more than 300 drones, ballistic missiles and cruise missiles.

Tehran launched the attack in retaliation for a suspected Israeli strike in Syria on April 1 that killed two Iranian generals in an Iranian consular building.

Hezbollah says it targeted Israeli soldiers and equipment

NBC News

Hezbollah released five statements today saying it targeted Israeli soldiers and equipment.

Israeli soldiers were targeted at posts in Bayad Blida, Ruwaisat Al-Alam and Shebaa Farms. "Espionage equipment" was struck in Bayad Blida, according to Hezbollah.

NBC News could not independently confirm the statements.

Israel gave U.S. last-minute info about drone action on Iran, Italian foreign minister says at G7

The Associated Press

The United States told theGroup of Sevenforeign ministers today that it received “last-minute” information from Israel about a drone action in Iran, but didn’t participate in the apparent attack, officials said.

Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani, who chaired the meeting of ministers of industrialized countries, said the United States provided the information at a morning session that was changed at the last minute to address the suspected attack.

Tajani said the U.S. informed the G7 ministers that it had been “informed at the last minute” by Israel about the drones. “But there was no sharing of the attack by the U.S. It was a mere information.”

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken declined to comment on the assertion, but emphasized that the U.S. was not involved in any attack and was committed to working for a “de-escalation” in the region.

“I’m not going to speak to that except to say that the United States has not been involved in any offensive operations,” Blinken said.

United Airlines cancels flights to Israel until May 2

Mirna Alsharif

United Airlines is canceling its daily flight from Newark, New Jersey, to Tel Aviv until May 2 following Israel's retaliatory strike on Iran.

The airline's second scheduled flight from Newark to Tel Aviv is canceled until May 18. United's flights from Newark to Tel Aviv are its only flights to Israel, a spokesperson said.

"We continue to closely monitor the situation and will make decisions on upcoming flights with a focus on the safety of our customers and crews," United Airlines said in a statement.

Jordan's foreign affairs minister: 'The Israeli-Iranian escalation must stop'

Mirna Alsharif

Jordan's Minister of Foreign Affairs Ayman Safadi said in a statement that the "Israeli-Iranian escalation must stop" and attention should not be diverted from Israel's actions in Gaza.

"We condemn all actions that lead to a regional war," he wrote on X. "The Israeli-Iranian escalation must stop, and efforts must remain and focus on ending the brutal Israeli aggression on Gaza. This is the priority now, and the world’s attention must not be allowed to be diverted from this aggression and efforts to stop it immediately."

Safadi reiterated in a phone call with the Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs Hussein Amir-Abdollahian that Jordan will not allow Iran or Israel to violate its airspace to target each other, according to a statement from the minister's office.

Safadi said in the statement that Jordan won't allow itself "to be referred to a battlefield between Iran and Israel, endangering its security and the safety of its citizens."

Israel missiles hit defense positions in southern Syria, state media reports

Mithil Aggarwal

Syria's defense ministry said today that Israel launched missiles against air defense positions in the south of the country.

The strikes resulted in “material losses,” the state-run Sana news agency reported, citing a military source. It did not say where exactly the attack took place.

The report from Syria came after Israel struck Iran in the early hours of the morning.

France calls for 'de-escalation and restraint'

Reuters

France is calling for de-escalation in the Middle East crisis,DeputyFrenchForeignMinisterJean-Noel Barrot said today.

“All I can say is that France’s position is to call on all actors for de-escalation and restraint,” Barrot told Sud Radio when asked about the strikes on Iran.

All sides must ‘refrain from further action,’ E.U. Commission president says

Veronica Lin

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said today that “everything possible” must be done to encourage restraint on all sides and avoid escalation in the Middle East after the Israeli attack on Iran.

“We have seen the massive attack with drones and missiles, around about 300, by Iran on Israel,” she said in Finland. “It is absolutely necessary that the region stays stable and that all sides refrain from further action.”

U.S. and Israeli officials discuss Iran and Rafah

Mirna Alsharif

U.S. and Israeli officials met yesterday to discuss matters including Iran and Rafah, according to a statement from The White House.

The U.S.-Israel Strategic Consultative Group was convened by national security adviser Jake Sullivan and discussed Iran's retaliatory drone and missile strikes on Israel following the Jewish state's deadly attack on its consular building in Syria.

Sullivan mentioned the new sanctions "and other measures" that will be imposed on Iran by the U.S. following their response to Israel.

U.S. officials also "expressed concerns with various courses of action in Rafah, and Israeli participants agreed to take these concerns into account," according to a readout from The White House. It did not say what those concerns were.

The group will meet again soon, the White House said.

Egypt warns of 'expanding consequences' in the region

Mithil Aggarwal

Egypt is calling on Iran and Israel to exercise “utmost levels of restraint,” as escalating strikes risk starting an all-out war in the region.

Cairo warned of the “consequences of the expanding conflict and instability in the region,” the foreign ministry said on X, and “dangerous effects on the security and safety of its people.”

Egypt, which borders Gaza to its north, said it will maintain contact with all parties to contain the conflict.

'High time' to stop the escalation, U.N. Secretary General says

Mithil Aggarwal

Amid soaring tensions in the Middle East, U.N. Secretary General António Guterres says it's "high time to stop the dangerous cycle of retaliation."

"The Secretary-General condemns any act of retaliation," his spokesperson, Stéphane Dujarric, said in a statement, adding that further escalation "could lead to devastating consequences for the entire region and beyond."

Iran says it will review its nuclear doctrine after Israel attack

Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Brig. Gen. Ahmad Haqtalab warned that revisions could be made to Iran's nuclear policies if Israel continues to threaten attacks on its nuclear sites.

Israel carried out a limited military strike against Iran last night, a source familiar with the situation told NBC News.

Iranian state media reported that air defense systems were engaged in several provinces and that nuclear sites in Isfahan, in central Iran, were safe.

Israeli president delivers a speech without mentioning strike

Raf Sanchez

TEL AVIV — Israeli President Isaac Herzog delivered a video speech today without making any mention of its strike on Iran.

Focusing mainly on hostages held by Hamas, Herzog said this year’s Passover will not be the same without them. He also urged everyone to leave an empty chair beside the Seder table, where the Jewish ritual’s feast is conducted.

“We all remember and remind in the deepest way that the covenant between the state and its citizens obligates us to act in every way, with creativity, determination, and courage, to bring the daughters and sons home,” he said.

Targeting a nuclear facility is ‘playing with fire,’ head of U.N. nuclear watchdog says

Henry Austin

Targeting a nuclear facility is “playing with fire,”the head of the United Nations nuclear watchdog said today.

“We have our teams of inspectors who are permanently working in Iran in all the nuclear sites of the country and of course, through the night we were following with great attention what was going on there,” International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Rafael Grossi told Sky News this morning.

“Fortunately we were able to confirm early this morning that after these attacks that there has not been any damage to these sites,” he added.

Grossi said he had been urging everyone to “exercise maximum restraint.”

“Targeting a nuclear facility, apart from being forbidden by international law, is playing with fire,” he said.

Iranian political analyst plays down strikes

Henry Austin

A former adviser to the Iranian nuclear negotiations teams has played down the Israeli strike on his country this morning.

“We haven’t seen anything in particular happen,” professor Seyed Mohammad Marandi, an Iranian-American academic and political analyst, told the British broadcaster Sky News.

He added that the wave of drone and missile attacks launched at Israel by Iran on the weekend was “highly successful.”

An Israeli military spokesman told The Associated Press on Sunday, the day after the launches, that they numbered more than 300 but 99% of them were intercepted.

Marandi said the drones Iran fired were “dirt cheap,” and intended as a distraction. “They were meant to draw fire and that’s exactly what they did, draw fire from Israeli regime defenses,” he said.

“Iran was able to gather intelligence about what the Americans and the Israelis have, their radar systems, their missile defense capabilities and they were also able to empty their stocks with a bunch of very old drones that Iran had in stock,” he added.

China says it opposes any further escalation of tensions

Veronica Lin

Rae Wang

Veronica Lin and Rae Wang

China opposes any action that could further escalate tensions in the Middle East after the Israeli attack on Iran, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said today in Beijing.

China was among the 12 U.N. Security Council members that voted yesterday to recognize a Palestinian state, a measure vetoed by the U.S.

Fu Cong, China’s new permanent representative at the U.N., called the U.S. decision “most disappointing.”

“As it is more and more clear that the Israeli side is rejecting the two-state solution, the admission of the state of Palestine as a full U.N. member would allow Palestine to enjoy equal status with Israel and would help create conditions for the resumption of negotiations between the two sides,” he said.


Blinken: U.S. not involved 'in any offensive operations'

Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (9)

Henry Austin

F. Brinley Bruton

Henry Austin and F. Brinley Bruton

Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the United States had "not been involved in any offensive operations" when asked about the Israeli strike on Iran.

At a news conference in Capri, Italy, during a G7 meeting, Blinken said he would not “speak to these reported events,” adding that the U.S. was intensely focused on de-escalating the violence in the region.

The G7, he said, was committed to Israeli security and "to de-escalating, to trying to bring this tension to a close."

At the meeting he said there was “a commitment to holding Iran to account, to account for its destabilizing activities, holding it to account by degrading its missile and drone capabilities.”


Suspected Iranian spy ship sails home

Matthew Mulligan

Ahead ofIsrael’s responsetoTehran’s retaliatory attack, a suspected Iranian spy shipappeared to be sailing home after almost three years at sea.

The return of theMV Behshad, a cargo ship that U.S. analysts and officials suspect may have provided information and targeting assistance toHouthi rebels in the Red Sea, would remove one possible high-profile target for any Israeli strikes.

Iran has previously warned against targeting the ship, and in a sign of the heightened tensions over possible Israeli targets, a senior Iranian commander warned yesterday that the country could review its nuclear doctrine.

“If Israel wants to use the threat of attacking nuclear centers to put pressure on Iran, it is likely that the nuclear doctrine and policies of the Islamic Republic of Iran will be reviewed and the considerations announced previously will be canceled,” Ahmad Haghtalab, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps commander in charge of nuclear security, was quoted as saying by the country’s semiofficial Tasnim news agency.

Read the full story here.

No signs of panic in Israel after strikes on Iran

Raf Sanchez

Paul Goldman

Raf Sanchez and Paul Goldman

TEL AVIV — Israelis woke up this morning to news that their government had struck back against Iran. In Tel Aviv, there were no signs of panic as people went about their shopping this morning before the start of the Jewish Sabbath at sundown.

And unlike last Saturday — when the Israeli military ordered schools shut and banned large gatherings — no new restrictions were imposed on the country’s civilian population.

Anita Bardin, an 83-year-old retired social worker, said she was dismayed that the cycle of escalation between Israel and Iran was continuing.

“It’s like children’s play in a kindergarten. This needs to stop. Israel and other countries did an amazing job of blocking the Iranian attack, so why continue?” she told NBC News. “Call it a win and stop.”

Like many liberal Israelis, she said she feared Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was prolonging the war for his own political purposes.

“Bibi is interested only in himself and can’t call an end to the war, so he does whatever he needs to survive,” she said using his nickname. “He is dangerous.”

British PM reaffirms Israel’s right to self-defense

Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (12)

Annie Hill

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak reaffirmed Israel’s right to self-defense after Iran's retaliatory attack, and said Britain was working with allies to confirm details of the strike Israel apparently has carried out in response.

“We have condemned Iran’s reckless and dangerous barrage of missiles against Israel on Saturday, and Israel absolutely has the right to self-defense,” Sunak said in London today.

He also said he had told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last week that “significant escalation is not in anyone’s interest.”

“What we want to see is calm heads prevail across the region,” he said.

'Government of Iran wants to destroy Israel forever,' Biden warned recently

Phil Helsel

In calling for Congress to pass military aid to Israel and Ukraine, President Joe Biden this week wrote that “the government of Iran wants to destroy Israel forever,” as he condemned its April 13 retaliatory attack on the country.

Iran’s attack on Israel with 300 drones and missiles last weekend comes “after years of backing Hezbollah, Hamas and other proxies in their attacks on Israel, including Hamas’s brutal attack on Oct. 7,” Biden wrote on an op-ed published in The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday.

Biden has been pressing the Republican-led House to pass military aid bills to help Israel and also give military assistance to Ukraine in its fight against the Russian invasion.

"IfIransucceeds in significantly escalating its assault on Israel, the U.S. could be drawn in. Israel is our strongest partner in the Middle East; it’s unthinkable that we would stand by if its defenses were weakened andIranwas able to carry out the destruction it intended this weekend," he wrote.

CIA director: Iranian attack on Israel was a ‘spectacular failure’

Dan De Luce

Iran’smissile and drone barrage against Israellast weekend “turned out to be a spectacular failure,” with nearly all of the projectilesfailing to hit Israel, CIA Director William Burns said yesterday.

Speaking at an event at the George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas, Burns saidthat the thwartingof the missile and drone assault showed the strength ofIsrael’smilitary and that it had “friends” in the world, including the U.S. and other countriesthat helped, as well.

“It’s a reminder of the quality of the Israeli military,” he said. “It’s a reminder of the fact that the Israelis have friends starting with the United States, but others, as well.”

Read the full story here.

Analysis: Silence from Israeli government is telling

Raf Sanchez

TEL AVIV — Israel is neither confirming nor denying it was responsible for this morning’s attack on Iran. When approached by NBC News, both the Israeli prime minister’s office and the IDF responded with “no comment.”

There are currently no scheduled plans for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak publicly.

That official silence from the Israeli government is telling. If Israel was seen to be gloating about the strike, Iran’s government would likely face intense public pressure to retaliate.

By remaining silent, Israel is giving Iran space to minimize the incident and plausibly claim there’s no need for escalation. So far, that’s the path Iran is choosing.

Sometimes what a government says about a military strike can be as important as the strike itself.

Iran says it shot down three small drones over Isfahan

Mithil Aggarwal

Iranian state media said the sound of several explosions in Isfahan province was caused by the destruction of three small drones.

The semi-official Mehr news agency said that no information about the drones was available as of yet and that a search for the wreckage was underway.

The agency said air defense systems had also fired at a “suspicious flying object” overtheIranian city of Tabriz.

Other Iranian state media reported that there had been no casualties or damage, including at the nuclear facility in Isfahan.

S&P cuts Israel’s credit rating on heightened geopolitical risk

Reuters

Ratings agency S&P Global has cut Israel’s long-term ratings to A-plus from AA-minus after the confrontation with Iran heightened last weekend and amid the already elevated geopolitical risks for Israel.

“We forecast that Israel’s general government deficit will widen to 8% of GDP in 2024, mostly as a result of increased defense spending,” S&P Global said in its statement yesterday, before Israel’s overnight attack on Iran.

The negative outlook reflects the risk that the Israel-Hamas war and the confrontation with Hezbollah could escalate or affect Israel’s economy more than the agency currently expects.

“We currently see several possible military escalation risks, including a more substantial, direct, and sustained military confrontation with Iran,” the statement said.

Oman condemns what it calls ‘Israeli attack’ on Iran

Veronica Lin

The Gulf Arab state of Oman, which serves as a mediator between the U.S. and Iran, condemned what it called the “Israeli attack” on the Iranian city of Isfahan.

It also “condemns and denounces Israel’s repeated military attacks in the region,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Israeli officials largely silent; national security minister calls strike ‘feeble’

Mithil Aggarwal

Israeli officials have remained largely silent on the country’s response today to Iran’s strikes last weekend, as Iranian officials downplay the impact of the overnight attack.

National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir, a member of a far-right party, summed up his thoughts in one word in a post on X: “Feeble.”

Another Israeli politician, Tally Gotliv of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s far-right Likud party, was more celebratory.

“It is a morning where our heads are held high with pride,” she wrote on X, adding, “May we regain our deterrence power.”

Reporters in Iran say life is normal in Isfahan

NBC News

Video from Iranian semiofficial and government-controlled media showed reporters purportedly in Isfahan, the central Iranian city that appears to have been targeted in the overnight attack.

A reporter for the Tasnim news agency said there was no damage in Isfahan, which is home to Iranian nuclear facilities. He did not mention Israel.

“Everything is safe and sound. Nothing is going on,” he said.

U.S. vetoes widely supported resolution backing full U.N. membership for Palestine

The Associated Press

The United States vetoed a widely backed U.N. resolution yesterday that would have paved the way for full United Nations membership for Palestine,a goal the Palestinians have long soughtand Israel has worked to prevent.

The vote in the 15-member Security Council was 12 in favor, the United States opposed and two abstentions, from the United Kingdom and Switzerland. U.S. allies France, Japan and South Korea supported the resolution.

The strong support the Palestinians received reflects not only the growing number of countries recognizing their statehood, but almost certainly the global support forPalestinians facing a humanitarian crisiscaused by thewar in Gaza, now in its seventh month.

The resolution would have recommended that the 193-member U.N. General Assembly, where there are no vetoes, approve Palestine becomingthe 194th member of the United Nations. Some 140 countries have already recognized Palestine, so its admission would have been approved, likely by a much higher number of countries.

U.S. Deputy Ambassador Robert Wood told the Security Council that the veto “does not reflect opposition to Palestinian statehood but instead is an acknowledgment that it will only come from direct negotiations between the parties.”

His voice breaking at times, Palestinian U.N. Ambassador Riyad Mansour told the council after the vote: “The fact that this resolution did not pass will not break our will and it will not defeat our determination.”

“We will not stop in our effort,” he said. “The state of Palestine is inevitable. It is real. Perhaps they see it as far away, but we see it as near.”

U.N. secretary-general called for ‘maximum restraint’ to prevent wider war

Phil Helsel

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres had urged all parties to exercise “maximum restraint” to prevent the conflict between Iran and Israel from becoming a wider war.

“One miscalculation, one miscommunication, one mistake could lead to the unthinkable: a full-scale regional conflict that would be devastating for all involved and for the rest of the world,” Guterres said yesterday.

He condemned Iran’s April 13 attack on Israel with around 300 drones and missiles and said it was a “serious escalation.”

Guterres also had condemned Israel’s April 1 strike on an Iranian diplomatic building in Syria, which killed two Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps commanders.

The U.N. chief urged all sides to “end the bloody cycle of retaliation,” and said “the moment of maximum peril must be a time for maximum restraint.”

“Let me be clear: the risks are spiraling on many fronts. We have a shared responsibility to address those risks and pull the region back from the precipice,” Guterres said.

Iranian state media appears to downplay impact of strike

Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (15)
Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (16)

F. Brinley Bruton

Matthew Mulligan

F. Brinley Bruton and Matthew Mulligan

Iranian state media appeared to downplay the impact of a possible Israeli retaliatory strike in the country.

"Situation normal after air defenses fire at 'suspicious objects' in Iran," a headline on English-language Press TV read.

Press TV also reported "the sound of explosions" near the Iranian cities of Isfahan and Tabriz "after air defense systems fired at 'suspicious objects' early Friday."Israel was not mentioned.

"Important facilities in the Isfahan province, especially nuclear facilities, are completely safe and no accidents have been reported," Press TV said, citing officials.

Tasnim News Agency, the news outlet associated with Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, posted video from Isfahan showing cars driving around, people getting coffee and flights resuming.

Video appears to show airstrike over Iran

NBC News

Video appears to show an airstrike near the city of Isfahan in Iran as Israel carried out a limited military attack in the country, according to a source familiar with the situation. NBC News National Security Reporter Dan De Luce looks at the early response from Iran and Israel.

IAEA: No damage to Iran’s nuclear facilities

Phil Helsel

The International Atomic Energy Agency has confirmed that there is no damage to Iran’s nuclear facilities after an Israeli strike on the country, but it joined others in calling for restraint.

Rafael Mariano Grossi, director general of the agency, “continues to call for extreme restraint from everybody,” the IAEA said on social media platform X.

“IAEA is monitoring the situation very closely,” the agency said. Iranian state media also reported no damage to nuclear facilities in Isfahan and said they were “in complete safety.”

Biden imposes sanctions on Iran after drone and missile attack on Israel

Summer Concepcion

The Biden administration announced new sanctions earlier yesterday targeting Iran’s missile and drone program after itsretaliatory attack on Israellast weekend.

Biden said in a statement that the sanctions speak to the commitment he and fellow leaders of the Group of Seven leading industrialized nations made to collectively ramp up economic pressure on the Iranian government.

Biden also noted that U.S. allies were issuing additional sanctions and measures in an effort to curtail Iran’s destabilizing military programs. The United Kingdomannounced sanctionsyesterday against Iranian military figures and organizations, andEuropean Unionleaders also said this week that theywould increase sanctionsagainst Iran.

“Let it be clear to all those who enable or support Iran’s attacks: The United States is committed to Israel’s security,” Biden said. “We are committed to the security of our personnel and partners in the region. And we will not hesitate to take all necessary action to hold you accountable.”

Read the full story here.

Hezbollah's second-in-command insists it isn't seeking war

Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (21)

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Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (22)

Matt Bradley

Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (23)

Ziad Jaber

Natasha Lebedeva

Matt Bradley, Ziad Jaber and Natasha Lebedeva

BEIRUT — TheIran-backed Hezbollahis determined not to ramp up its monthslong firefight over Lebanon’s southern border, but it will respond in kind to anyIsraeli escalation, the political party and militia’s second-in-command said in a rare and exclusive interview.

Naim Qassem faulted Israel and the U.S. for perpetuatingtit-for-tat attacksthat havekilled hundredsin southern Lebanon and displaced tens of thousands of civilians on both sides of the Israeli-Lebanese border.

The conflict started with Hamas’ terrorist attack on Israel on Oct. 7, which killed more than 1,200 people and sparked Israel’s bloody incursion into the Gaza Strip, which has since killed almost 34,000 people, according to the Health Ministry in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

“We didn’t expect the war would last this long because we didn’t think that Netanyahu was that foolish; same for Biden and the other countries,” Qassem said as Israel’s two-front conflict drags into its seventh month.

Read the full story here.

Iran flights resume after reports of Israel strike

NBC News

The civil aviation organization that had suspended flights this morning announced that flights have resumed and the situation is normal.

There are no restrictions on domestic and international flights at the country’s airports.

U.S. Embassy in Israel restricts movement of employees after strike

Phil Helsel

Acting “out of an abundance of caution,” the U.S. Embassy in Israel said it was restricting personal travel of government employees and their families following reports of an Israeli strike against Iran.

The restrictions are on personal travel outside the areas of Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Be’er Sheva, it said in a security alert.

“The U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem reminds U.S. citizens of the continued need for caution and increased personal security awareness as security incidents often take place without warning,” it said. “The security environment remains complex and can change quickly depending on the political situation and recent events.”

‘A lot will depend on how much damage was done,’ ex-CIA director Brennan says

Phil Helsel

Intelligence agencies will be trying to determine the scope of the Israeli strike's damage, and whether there are casualties or how many could increase pressure on Iran to respond, former CIA Director John Brennan said.

“‘A lot will depend on how much damage was done inside of Iran,” Brennan, who headed the agency from 2013 to January 2017, said on MSNBC.

Isfahan, a city in central Iran, is a “target-rich environment,” with an air base, a missile production facility and other areas that could be of interest, he said. The city was also attacked before, when a military facility was struck last year, Iran said at the time.

“What CIA is doing right now is trying to determine exactly what that damage is and trying to then see how the Iranians are going to react,” Brennan said.

“And we may know whether or not we’re going to get into this very dangerous escalatory spiral by some of the initial statements that are going to be coming out of Tehran — whether or not they’re going to say, ‘This was ineffective,’ whether the Iranian defense forces were able to repel some of these strikes, even if they didn’t,” he said.

If Iran claims there are a large number of civilian casualties, it could stoke angry reactions and precede an Iranian strike in response, Brennan said.

"I think if there is a lot of blood that was shed in these strikes, the Iranians are going to really feel compelled to be able to respond somehow to Israel," he said.

Israel carried out a limited military strike, source says

Raf Sanchez

TEL AVIV —Israel is assessing the strike’s effectiveness and the damage it caused, a source familiar with the situation said. The strike was carried out early today local time.

An Israel Defense Forces spokesman declined to comment on reports of the strike.

The spokesman said there are no changes to guidelines for Israel’s civilian population.

Congressional reactions start rolling in

Megan Lebowitz

Members of Congress are starting to post reactions on social media.

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., wrote, "hearing @khamenei_ir is having a blast today on his birthday," referring to the country's supreme leader's birthday today. Florida's other GOP senator, Rick Scott, wrote that the U.S. "stands with Israel."

Rep. Ritchie Torres, D-N.Y., pointed to Iran's drone and missile launches against Israel and Iran's financial support for Hezbollah and Hamas.

"Israel has a right to defend itself from both direct and indirect forms of Iranian aggression," he said on X.

Rep. Nancy Mace, R-S.C., expressed support for Israel while also attacking President Joe Biden and praising former President Donald Trump.

"No one would have ever tested Trump the way they walk all over Joe Biden like he’s irrelevant," she posted.

Biden has not yet issued a statement in response to the strike.

Strike in Iran comes on its supreme leader's birthday

Megan Lebowitz

The strike, which took place Friday morning local time, happened on the birthday of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

He turns 85.

Tehran's Mehrabad Airport says flights are suspended

NBC News

The information desk at Tehran Mehrabad Airport said that all flights are suspended until 10:30 a.m. local time (3 a.m. ET).

Mehrabad Airport is not the international airport in Tehran — it is a city airport.

The website of Imam Khomeini International Airport, just outside Tehran, said all departures were delayed until 10:55 a.m.

Flights were suspended in Tehran, Isfahan and Shiraz, the state media agency IRNA reported earlier.

Tehran vowed 'decisive, definitive and regretful' response before strike

Daniel Arkin

Iran's foreign minister issued a stern warning to the Israeli government earlier today. In an interview with CNN, Hossein Amirabdollahiancautioned that Iran's response to any attacks from Israel would be "decisive, definitive and regretful."

"We do not seek to create tension and crisis or increase such situations in the Middle East, and we sincerely hope the Israeli regime does not repeat this egregious error," he added.

Nuclear sites in Isfahan are safe, Iranian state media says

Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (29)
Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (30)

Phil Helsel

Saba Hamedy

Phil Helsel and Saba Hamedy

The state-backed Iranian media Fars reported that nuclear sites in Isfahan are safe amid an Israeli strike on the country.

“Some reports from foreign news agencies about incidents in these facilities is incorrect,” reported the news agency, which is aligned with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

Isfahan is in central Iran. A military factory there was attacked last year.

Iran's weekend retaliatory strike was country's first direct military assault on Israel

Daniel Arkin

Iran’s retaliatory attack Saturday marked the first time the country’s theocratic regime has launched a direct military assault on Israel. It came less than two weeks after Israel’s bombing of an Iranian diplomatic compound in Damascus, which killed seven Iranian military commanders.

Israel, the U.S. and their allies managed to fend off the Iranian drone and missile attack, which caused relatively little harm or damage.

U.S. not involved in strike in Iran, source says

Andrea Mitchell

The U.S. was not involved in Israel's strike in Iran, a source familiar with the situation confirmed, adding that there was a pre-notification to the U.S. from the Israelis about the strike.

No comment from Netanyahu's office

Anna Schecter

A source in Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office declined to comment on the reported strike in Iran.

The Israel Defense Forces spokesman’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Flights suspended from Tehran, Isfahan and Shiraz, Iran state news says

NBC News

Flights in the Iranian cities of Tehran, Isfahan and Shiraz were suspended Friday morning, the state-run IRNA news agency reported amid reports of a possible strike in the country.

“The flights out of these airports have not been canceled up to this point, they have been suspended. Passengers before leaving, check flight information,” the news agency said on Telegram.

Israel has carried out operation in Iran tonight, source says

+2

Mosheh Gains

Courtney Kube

Dan De Luce

Mosheh Gains, Courtney Kube and Dan De Luce

A person familiar with the situation told NBC News that Israel carried out an operation in Iran tonight.

Separately, Israeli officials notified U.S. officials earlier today that a response was coming.

The Israeli Embassy in Washington declined to comment on whether Israel has launched an attack on Iran.

The CIA declined to comment.

U.S. has said it will defend Israel, not engage in offensive operations against Iran

Daniel Arkin

President Joe Biden told Israeli leaders that while the U.S. commitment to defend Israel is ironclad, the U.S. would not participate in offensive operations against Iran, a senior administration official told NBC News.

U.S. officials have told NBC News that Washington was concerned about Israel’s responding quickly without thinking through the potential fallout.

Iran’s foreign minister warned today of response to any force

Phil Helsel

Iran “will not hesitate a bit to assert its inherent right to give a decisive and proper response” to any use of force against it by Israel, Iran’s foreign affairs minister told the United Nations today.

Hossein Amirabdollahian said that Iran’s attack Saturday on Israel, which he said was a forced response to Israel's April 1 attack on its embassy in Syria, was over.

“Iran’s legitimate defense and countermeasures have been concluded,” Amirabdollahian said. “Therefore the Israeli regime, the terrorist Israeli regime, must be compelled to stop any further military adventurism against our interests.”

“Certainly in case of any use of force by the Israeli regime and violating our sovereignty, the Islamic Republic of Iran will not hesitate a bit to assert its inherent right to give a decisive and proper response to it, to make the regime regret its actions,” he said.

Iran’s attack by drones and missiles was mostly thwarted, but some damage was done in Israel, officials said.

Two Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps commanders — Gen. Mohammad Reza Zahedi and Gen. Mohammad Hadi Haji Rahimi —were killed in the Israeli strike on an Iranian consular building in Syria. Five other Revolutionary Guard members were also killed.

Israel assessing damage from limited strike in Iran (2024)
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