January 16th – Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps launched ballistic missile attacks on Erbil, a city in the Kurdish region of northern Iraq. The IRGC stated that 11 missiles were used to destroy espionage centers and gatherings of anti-Iranian terrorist groups in the region. Iran claimed to target the headquarters of the Israeli spy agency Mossad in Erbil. This attack, condemned by the Iraqi government as a violation of sovereignty and security, resulted in civilian casualties in residential areas.
Among the civilian casualties was multimillionaire Kurdish businessman Peshraw Dizayee and several family members, killed when a rocket hit their home. Dizayee was known for his close connections with the ruling Barzani clan and his involvement in major real estate and security projects in the Kurdish region.
The Kurdish regional government responded by shooting down three bomb-laden drones targeting a U.S.-led coalition base in Erbil, near the city’s international airport. The U.S. State Department, through spokesperson Matthew Miller, condemned the missile attacks as reckless and undermining Iraq’s stability. The UK Foreign Minister David Cameron echoed these sentiments, calling the strikes unprovoked and unjustified.