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December 21, 2020 10:05 am

US Ready to Respond If Iran Tries to Avenge Soleimani Killing: US General

avatar by i24 News

Women gather at the site where Iranian Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani and Iraqi militia commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis were killed in a US airstrike, near Baghdad International Airport, Feb. 13, 2020. Photo: Reuters / Wissam al-Okaili / File.

i24 News – The US is “prepared to react” if Iran tries to launch any sort of attack in retaliation for the killing of General Qassem Soleimani, the head of US Middle East forces warned Sunday.

“We are prepared to defend ourselves, our friends and partners in the region, and we’re prepared to react if necessary,” US Central Command (CENTCOM) chief General Kenneth McKenzie said.

“My assessment is we are in a very good position and we’ll be prepared for anything the Iranians or their proxies acting for them might choose to do,” he added.

The comments were made during a telephone interview from an undisclosed location as McKenzie tours the Middle East.

The regional visit comes just weeks before the first anniversary of the January 3 drone strike in Baghdad that killed Soleimani and a major leader of the Iraqi pro-Iran militias.

The CENTCOM chief said he had recently visited Baghdad, where he met with the head of the anti-jihadist coalition, American General Paul Calvert, as well as the Iraqi army chief of staff, General Abdul Amir Yarallah.

McKenzie said he had also gone to Syria to meet with American forces deployed in the small southern base at Al-Tanf, near the border with Jordan and Iraq.

In an apparent sign of US military leaders’ concerns about Iranian intentions after Soleimani’s killing, McKenzie’s current tour was not announced in advance.

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