In this picture released by the Iranian state-run IRIB News Agency on Monday, June 19, 2017, a missile is fired from city of Kermanshah in western Iran targeting ISIS in Syria. (IRIB News Agency, Morteza Fakhrinejad via AP)
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Iran says its ballistic missile strike targeting ISIS in Syria was not only a response to deadly attacks in Tehran, but a powerful message to archrival Saudi Arabia and the United States, one that could add to already soaring regional tensions.The launch, which hit Syria's eastern city of Deir al-Zor on Sunday night, appeared to be Iran's first missile attack abroad in over 15 years and its first in the Syrian conflict, in which it has provided crucial support to embattled President Bashar Assad.While Iran has other ballistic missiles it says can reach longer distances, Sunday's strike appears to be the furthest carried out abroad. Iran's last foreign missile strike is believed to have been carried out in April 2001, targeting an exiled Iranian group in Iraq.Since Trump took office, his administration has put new economic sanctions on those allegedly involved with Iran's missile program as the Senate has voted for applying new sanctions on Iran.When Iran unveiled the Zolfaghar in 2016, it bore a banner printed with a 2013 quote by Khamenei saying that Iran will annihilate the Israeli cities of Tel Aviv and Haifa should Israel attack Iran.
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