Israel Responds to Iran With Limited Strikes

Israel flag with missiles | Image by Anton Petrus/Getty Images

U.S. officials are reporting that Israel conducted overnight strikes against Iran in retaliation for Iran’s failed missile barrage against Israel last Saturday.

Few details have emerged on the Israeli response, but it appears the strikes targeted non-civilian and non-nuclear facilities. Explosions were heard in Isfahan Province, where the Natanz nuclear project is located, per reporting by Fox News. Officials with the Atomic Energy Commission have confirmed in a post on X that the strikes did not damage the facility. Iran claimed the facility was safe.

The latest information available indicates the target of the Israeli strike may have been a military airbase located in the region. There have not been reports of whether the Israeli strike was successful. Video is circulating that appears to show Iranian air defenses deploying in response to the Israeli attacks.

The Iranian-backed news agency Fars reported that explosions in Isfahan were the result of anti-missile technologies, not impacts from Israeli munitions.

The Iranian attack last weekend involved around 300 rockets, missiles, and drones. Some 99% were destroyed by Jordanian, U.S., and Israeli air defense systems, as reported by The Dallas Express.

Iran has suggested it will not respond to the Israeli strike, according to Fox News.

The United States purportedly did not participate in the retaliatory strike but was notified by Israel before the attack. It is not clear if the Israeli response caused any damage, but Iran has so far downplayed the attack. The White House has not commented on the strike.

“Iran seeks to return to the shadows and is downplaying the Israeli strike on the strategic city of Isfahan, but I think they’ve gotten the message: Israel can penetrate Iranian defenses and strike wherever it wants,” Jonathan Conricus, senior fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, wrote on X.

UN and U.S. officials have issued several calls to de-escalate the conflict. In a Friday statement, the G7 called on Iran and Israel to prevent a larger conflict from developing.

“What we’re focused on, what the G7 is focused on, and again, it’s reflected in our statement and in our conversation, is our work to de-escalate tensions, to de-escalate from any potential conflict. You saw Israel on the receiving end of an unprecedented attack,” Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said at a press conference on Friday, per CNN.

“But our focus has been on, of course, making sure that Israel can effectively defend itself, but also de-escalating tensions, avoiding conflict,” he added.

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