Iran launches air attack on Israel, with drones ‘hours’ away

Iran has launched dozens of drones and missiles at Israel, the country’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) confirmed, after Israel said Tehran had begun attacks.

The IRGC said on Saturday that it had released the drones and missiles under the operation “True Promise”, adding that the move was part of the punishment for “Israeli crimes”.

Israel said the drones would take several hours before reaching its airspace.

The strikes come nearly two weeks after an Israeli attack on the Iranian consulate in Syria killed seven IRGC members.

“We launched an operation using drones and missiles in response to the Zionist entity’s crime of targeting the Iranian consulate in Syria,” the IRGC said in a statement.

“The operation was carried out with dozens of missiles and drones to strike specific targets in the occupied territories.”

Speaking in televised address on Saturday, Israel’s army’s spokesman, Daniel Hagari, said: “Iran launched UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles] from its territory towards the territory of the state of Israel.

“This is a severe and dangerous escalation. Our defensive and offensive capabilities are at the highest level of readiness ahead of this large-scale attack from Iran.”

An ambulance is parked outside the Iranian embassy after a suspected Israeli strike on Monday on Iran's consulate, adjacent to the main Iranian embassy building, which Iran said had killed seven military personnel including two key figures in the Quds Force, in the Syrian capital Damascus

An ambulance is parked outside the Iranian embassy in Damascus after an Israeli strike on April 1, 2024 [File: Firas Makdesi/Reuters]