United States forces release pictures of Soleimani after his car was hit by an air raid

On January 3, Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Quds Force of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, was assassinated at Baghdad International Airport. 

The car that Qassem Soleimani was riding.
The car that Qassem Soleimani was riding.

The pictures shot by United States Special Operations forces display some of the results of the attack on Soleimani.

How did Qassem Soleimani die?

U.S. drone strike ordered by President Donald Trump that further worsened already strained relations between Tehran and Washington.

U.S. Special Operations forces were a half mile behind a convoy carrying Iranian General Qasem Soleimani when he was hit by a U.S. drone attack last week, Fox News reports.

The U.S. news agency said these forces were reportedly at the scene within a minute or two, conducting a so-called "bomb damage assessment.

This included taking photographs of the aftermath of the attack and confirming that the drone destroyed the correct car.

Some photos obtained by Fox News from a government source included close-up graphic views of Soleimani's disfigured body, with an image showing his burning body next to the car in which he was traveling.

Fox News quoted an anonymous source who said that after U.S. special forces dragged Soleimani's body away from the scene, they extinguished the fire before formally identifying the head of Iran's elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds Force.  

In addition, the photos included Soleimani's possessions and small arms, including books of poetry, wads of money, a pistol and an assault rifle.

Tensions between the U.S. and Iran intensified after the Soleimani massacre

The Iranian general was killed on January 3, when a U.S. Reaper drone launched a missile at Baghdad International Airport in an attack that was authorized by President Donald Trump and described by Tehran as an act of terror.

The attack further intensified tensions between the United States and Iran, which had been simmering since Washington's unilateral withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Action Plan (JCP).

Iran retaliated against the U.S. drone attack by striking U.S. forces with ballistic missiles at Ayn Al-Asad Air Force Base and a facility in Erbil, Iraq. There were no casualties in the attack, which Tehran claimed was carried out in self-defense and in line with the UN Charter.

Trump said there would be no immediate U.S. escalation of the conflict during his January 8 speech to the nation, when he noted Washington's willingness to make peace with Tehran if its leaders "change their behavior. At the same time, Trump stressed that Iran would never be allowed to obtain a nuclear weapon.