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Israel targeted air base of Iran in drones attack on Isfahan on Friday

TEL AVIV: Israel media reported on Friday that Israel targeted an air base of Iran in Isfahan in drones attacks on Friday.

Explosions reverberated near the Iranian city of Isfahan in the early hours of Friday, marking what is believed to be Israel’s retaliatory strike for an Iranian assault on Israel a few days prior, despite international calls for restraint.

Israeli authorities did not officially confirm the strike, while Iranian state media downplayed the incident, stating that air defenses were activated without acknowledging an attack on a military facility in Isfahan.

Unnamed Israeli and American officials, however, informed US media outlets of Israel’s involvement, corroborated by three Iranian sources cited by The New York Times. The extent of the damage remains uncertain.

The strike, reportedly conducted with drones rather than conventional missiles or airstrikes, and the absence of official acknowledgment, may afford Iran plausible deniability to evade escalation. This suggests a potential de-escalation effort by both Israel and Iran.

Anticipation for the strike had been widespread, with Israel signaling throughout the week its intent to respond to Iran’s unprecedented barrage of over 300 ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and drones earlier in the week, raising concerns of escalating hostilities.

Despite this, there were indications that Israel’s Defense Forces adjusted their plans under international pressure for restraint. National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir, known for advocating aggressive measures against Iran, dismissed the action as “lame.”

Iranian state TV reported the detection and destruction of three drones over Isfahan shortly after midnight, followed by a return to normalcy, with no ground explosions reported. Flight restrictions were initially imposed but later lifted on Friday morning.

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I am an experienced writer, analyst, and author. My exposure in English journalism spans more than 28 years. In the past, I have been working with daily The Muslim (Lahore Bureau), daily Business Recorder (Lahore/Islamabad Bureaus), Daily Times, Islamabad, daily The Nation (Lahore and Karachi). With daily The Nation, I have served as Resident Editor, Karachi. Since 2009, I have been working as a Freelance Writer/Editor for American organizations.

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