Iran has vowed “harsh retaliation” following the targeted U.S. strike that killed Soleimani.
Soleimani was the most powerful Iran general, who commanded Iran’s elite Quds Force and the architect of its regional military alliances.
The US Embassy in Baghdad on Friday urged all Americans to depart Iraq immediately, the NY Post reports.
This warning came hours after the Iranian Quds Force leader Qassem Soleimani and Iraqi militia commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis were killed in a US airstrike.
The embassy said in a statement: “Due to heightened tensions in Iraq and the region, the US Embassy urges American citizens to heed the January 2020 Travel Advisory and depart Iraq immediately.”
“US citizens should depart via airline while possible, and failing that, to other countries via land,” it added.
The strike also killed Al-Muhandis, who was the deputy commander of the Popular Mobilization Forces.
Al-Muhandis also founded of the Kataeb Hezbollah, or Hezbollah Brigades. The Trump administration blamed the group for a rocket attack in northern Iraq last week that killed an American contractor.
President Trump wrote to Twitter defending the decision behind the U.S. airstrike.
Trump writes, “General Qassem Soleimani has killed or badly wounded thousands of Americans over an extended period of time.”
“[soleimani was plotting to kill many more…but got caught!” Trump said.
“He was directly and indirectly responsible for the death of millions of people, including the recent large number of protesters killed in Iran itself,” Trump said.
“While Iran will never be able to properly admit it, Soleimani was both hated and feared within the country.”
“They are not nearly as saddened as the leaders will let the outside world believe. He should have been taken out many years ago!” Trump concluded.