190909 Anwar Gargash
Anwar Gargash Image Credit: AFP

Dubai: A US-led airstrike, on Friday, killed General Qasem Soleimani, head of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force - an influential political leader considered an architect of Iran's regional security apparatus.

Global leaders have reacted to the attack ordered by US President Donald Trump, many calling for restraint against further escalation.

UAE State Minister for Foreign Affairs Dr Anwar Mohammad Gargash tweeted on Friday.

“In light of the rapid regional developments, it is necessary to put wisdom, balance and political solutions above confrontation and escalation. The region has been facing complicated issues, and suffers from a loss of confidence between parties. This situation requires adopting a rational approach that is free of emotions,” Dr. Anwar Mohammad Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, tweeted.

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Iran's leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has threatened 'severe revenge' against the forces behind the killing. He also announced a three-day mourning period in Iran.

Meanwhile,  NATO has suspended training missions in Iraq, a spokesman for the alliance said Saturday.

The NATO mission in Iraq, which numbers in the hundreds, trains the country's security forces at the request of the Baghdad government to prevent the return of Daesh.

Tensions have been soaring between the US and Iran for many months, escalating heavily in the last month of 2019.

A rocket attack in northern Iraq killed an American contractor and wounded several military personnel on December 27.

The official described the attack as the biggest in the series of rocket strikes launched against US interests in the country since late October, killing one Iraqi soldier and leaving others wounded, as well as causing material damage in the vicinity of the US embassy in Baghdad’s Green Zone.

In retaliation, on December 29, US-led air strikes were directed at several bases belonging to the Hezbollah Brigades, one of the most radical factions of Hashed al-Shaabi, a Tehran-backed Iraqi paramilitary coalition.

The strikes "killed 25 and wounded 51," according to the Hashed, which holds major sway in Iraq.

Following this, dozens of angry Iraqi Shiite militia supporters broke into the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad on December 31 after smashing a main door and setting fire to a reception area. US forces are said to have fired tear gas to disperse the crowd that breached the outer wall of the compound, which is in the heavily fortified Green Zone.

US president Donald Trump responded to the embassy storming on Twitter promising a 'strong response'.