IDF IAF fighter jet airstrike air strike 311 (R).
(photo credit: Ho New / Reuters)
Iranian state television ran a report on Monday saying Israeli military aircraft were massing at a US air base in Iraq for a strike on Iran.
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The report appeared on the website of Press TV. Jerusalem said it had no knowledge of such a strike plan and Iraqi air force commander Staff Lieutenant General Anwar Ahmed also rejected the report as "groundless."
Press TV quoted what it said was a source close to the movement of
Moqtada al-Sadr, an Iraqi Shi'ite cleric who opposes the US presence in
Iraq and has close ties to Iran's leaders.
The Pentagon on Monday dismissed as "ridiculous" the report that appeared on the website of Iranian state television.
US Colonel Dave Lapan said there was no truth to the report.
Jerusalem accuses Tehran of using its declared civilian nuclear reactor
program to conceal a plan to develop atomic bombs that would threaten
the Jewish state. Israeli leaders have not ruled out military action
However, there has been no recent indication of increased tensions and
no other information on Monday to corroborate the Iranian television
An IDF spokeswoman said she had no knowledge of any such report and said
the military did not comment on operational matters. Iraqi air force
commander Staff Lieutenant General Anwar Ahmed rejected the report as
"The al-Asad base (mentioned by Press TV) exists on Iraqi territory. We
can never accept launching any military attack against any of the
neighboring countries, whether Iran or any other country, from Iraqi
lands," he told Reuters.
The United States and its Western allies suspect Iran is using its
nuclear energy program as a cover to build bombs. Iran denies the
allegation, insisting it needs nuclear technology to generate more
Iran has repeatedly warned that it would strike alleged Israeli nuclear targets if Israel attacked its nuclear activities.