Israeli intelligence helped the United States to assassinate Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in a drone strike in near Baghdad, NBC reported on Friday.
According to the report, informants at the Damascus international airport tipped off the CIA about the time Soleimani's plane took off for Baghdad, while Israel confirmed the intelligence provided to the Americans.
According to The New York Times, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo before Soleimani was assassinated, being the only leader in the region that was informed about the operation.
As the Cham Wings Airbus A320 carrying Soleimani landed outside the Iraqi capital, CIA agents at the Baghdad International Airport confirmed the exact location of the plane, the NBC report said.
Then, U.S. drones armed with four Hellfire missiles, moved into position in the Iraqi airspace, fully controlled by American forces.
– Iran quiz
In a bid to unravel the chain of events that led to Soleimani's killing, NBC interviewed two sources directly familiar with the details of the operation that took out the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards' Quds Force, as well as other senior officials who were informed about it.
Iraqi authorities are currently holding four people suspected of aiding the U.S. – two Baghdad airport employees and two Cham Wings airline workers, who are believed to be part of a broader network that provided information about Soleimani to the United States. The authorities suspect that the four informed the CIA about Soleimani's arrival in Iraq on the night he was killed.