READ: Department of Defense statement on Soleimani killing

The U.S. Department of Defense released the following statement about Thursday night's attack in Iraq:

Continue Reading Below

"At the direction of the President, the U.S. military has taken decisive defensive action to protect U.S. personnel abroad by killing Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps-Quds Force, a U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization.

OIL PRICES SPIKE AFTER US LAUNCHES AIRSTRIKE KILLING TOP IRANIAN COMMANDER

"General Soleimani was actively developing plans to attack American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region. General Soleimani and his Quds Force were responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American and coalition service members and the wounding of thousands more. He had orchestrated attacks on coalition bases in Iraq over the last several months - including the attack on December 27th - culminating in the death and wounding of additional American and Iraqi personnel. General Soleimani also approved the attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad that took place this week.

GET FOX BUSINESS ON THE GO BY CLICKING HERE

This strike was aimed at deterring future Iranian attack plans. The United States will continue to take all necessary action to protect our people and our interests wherever they are around the world."