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Israel launches retaliatory missile attack on Iran

This counterattack is in retaliation to Iran's launch of over 300 missiles and drones on Saturday night and early Sunday morning

Iran has activated its air defence systems over several cities this morning, amidst reports of a missile and drone strike by Israel with explosions which were heard near the central city of Isfahan, as per State Media’s report.

This retaliatory strike comes as a response to the barrage of about 300 missiles and drones unleashed by Iran on Saturday night and early Sunday morning, that is April 13th and 14th, 2024. The attack by Iran was in retribution for April 1’s suspected Israeli strike on the Iranian Consulate in Damascus, which killed 13 people.

Three tiny, unidentified flying objects were reportedly caught close to the city of Isfahan shortly after 4 a.m. local time (00:30 GMT), according to official television. According to state TV, these flying objects were intercepted and destroyed by Iranian air defence systems. It was believed that the air defence systems above Tabriz, which is located in northwest Iran, were also turned on.


According to the Reuters news agency, explosions were reported close to the airport in the nation’s capital city of Isfahan, Iran, although the cause was not immediately known. Flights have been cancelled in several areas including Tehran, Isfahan and Shiraz airports, according to Iranian Airports and Air Navigation Company.

Several drones “have been successfully shot down by the country’s air defence, there are no reports of a missile attack for now,” Iran’s space agency spokesman Hossein Dalirian said on X.

Iranian media has said that all nuclear facilities are safe and has not recorded any immediate effects. The Israeli army has refrained from commenting. The province of Isfahan is home to many nuclear installations, a sizable air base, and a significant missile production facility. Nuclear facilities in Isfahan were reported to be “completely secure”, Iran’s Tasnim news agency said.

The BBC Persian Instagram account shared a video from Isfahan that features orange flashes in the night sky accompanied by what seems like anti-aircraft gunfire bursts. Some Emirates and Flydubai flights that were flying over Iran early on Friday made sudden sharp turns away from the airspace, according to flight paths shown on the tracking website Flightradar24.

“The cause of these sounds is still unknown, and investigations continue until the exact details of the incident are determined,” the news agency said. According to Iran’s official news agency, military installations were the target of several explosions in Syria.

According to IRNA, assaults took place on a radar battalion situated in southern Syria, halfway between the town of Qarfa and the city of Adra, as well as the al-Thala military airport. Meanwhile, there were reports of explosions in the Babel region of al-Imam, Iraq.

Mohammad Marandi, a political and security analyst at the University of Tehran, says it is “still unclear if anything important has happened”. “There may have been three quadcopters that were downed somewhere near Isfahan but … everything is business as usual,” he told Al Jazeera.

“People in Isfahan … are saying everything is fine,” Marandi said, citing social media reports. Many recent reports from Al Jazeera, also suggest that IRna’s civil aviation authority has announced the lifting of flight restrictions in most airports. Entekhab News, also reported that flights are back to normal at Tehran’s main domestic airport, Mehrabad.

On Thursday, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said there had been a “perilous escalation” between Israel and Iran.

“One miscalculation, one miscommunication, one mistake, could lead to the unthinkable – a full-scale regional conflict that would be devastating for all involved,” he told the Security Council.

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