UPDATED 11:40 AM PT — Thursday, June 20, 2019
Congressional leaders and military chiefs are gathering in the White House Situation Room for a briefing with President Trump on the Iran situation. The meeting comes after the president commented on Iran’s attack on a U.S. drone in the Persian Gulf, saying “you will soon find out” whether the U.S. will retaliate. He made the comment while meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the Oval Office, and said he doesn’t think the attack was intentional.
Meanwhile, the Pentagon released a video showing the moment the U.S. drone was shot down by Iran. The video shows the smoke trail left by the maritime surveillance drone RQ-4 Global Hawk that was shot down in the Persian Gulf Thursday.
Pentagon releases video purporting to show the smoke trail left after a U.S. RQ-4 unmanned aerial vehicle was shot down by Iran over the Gulf of Oman pic.twitter.com/cry6WpwdrT
— Ryan Browne (@rabrowne75) June 20, 2019
Iran has claimed the drone was over its territory, but the U.S. maintains it did not violate Iran’s airspace. U.S. military officials have since specified the drone was shot down by an Iranian rocket in the international airspace over the Strait of Hormuz.
“This attack is an attempt to disrupt our ability to monitor the area, following recent threats to international shipping, and the free flow of commerce,” stated Lt. Gen. Joseph Guastella, U.S. Air Force Central Command. “Iranian reports that this aircraft was shot down over Iran are categorically false.”
President Trump reiterated that he does not want to go to war with the country, but assured the U.S. will defend itself.