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White House denies Iran provided early warning of attack on Israel

Anadolu Agency WORLD
Published April 16,2024

The White House strongly rebuffed Monday reports that Iran passed on advanced warnings about the timeframe and the intended targets of its retaliatory attacks on Israel.

National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby acknowledged that Washington and Tehran had exchanged messages in the run-up to Saturday's drone and missile attacks, but said it was "categorically false" that any advance warning was provided.

"I've seen reporting that the Iranians meant to fail, that this spectacular and embarrassing failure was all by design. I've also seen Iran say that they provided early warning to help Israel prepare its defenses and limit any potential damage. All of this is categorically false," he told reporters.

"There was never any message to us or to anyone else on the timeframe, the targets, or the type of response," he added.

Iran launched a barrage of drones and missiles at Israel on Saturday in response to the April 1 attack on the Iranian Consulate in Damascus, Syria, in which at least 13 people were killed, including seven military advisers.

Nearly all of the missiles fired by Iran were intercepted, and Kirby said the reprisal attack "was an embarrassing failure for the Supreme Leader" and for Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani said the reprisal on Israel was "necessary and appropriate," and was aimed at military targets. Israel has vowed to respond to the attack.

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian vowed that any further Israeli attack will be met with a "stronger" and "extensive" response.