The federal government calls on all parties to exercise restraint. As a precautionary measure, Lufthansa cancels flights to Israel and northern Iraq until Saturday morning.

Demonstration with posters and banners.

Anti-Israel demonstration in Tehran on April 19, 2024 Photo: Majid Asgaripour/Wana News Agency/Reuters

SEDAN afp/dpa/rtr/taz | Following reports of an alleged Israeli attack in Iran, Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) called on all parties to show restraint. “We call on everyone to continue to contribute to the reduction of tension in the future,” Scholz said on the sidelines of an SPD event on the island of Norderney on Friday. “De-escalation remains the order of the day.” Germany will talk to all its friends and allies to work “together with them in this direction.”

According to Iranian state media reports, three explosions rocked the Isfahan region of Iran on Friday night. According to constant reports from the American media, this is said to be an attack by Israel. In response to last weekend's Iranian airstrikes, Israel carried out a military operation, ABC News, MSNBC and Fox News and other outlets reported, citing US government officials. The Pentagon initially did not confirm the reports. Israel has not yet claimed responsibility for the attack.

Government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit said in Berlin that the federal government had taken note of the reports. “It is absolutely necessary to prevent a forest fire in the region,” he stressed. This call for de-escalation and moderation is addressed “to all parties.” For the rest, Hebestreit spoke of an “opaque information situation.”

CDU leader Friedrich Merz considers Israeli attacks against Iran legitimate, even on its territory. “Israel's right to self-defense does not end at its national borders. If the threat comes from outside, Israel has the right to defend itself against it,” Merz told dpa on the sidelines of Ludwig Erhard's summit in Gmund am Tegernsee.

Iraqi airspace is being overflown

“Iran has exclusive control over whether this conflict expands or not,” Merz emphasized. “Dominance of escalation rests solely with the mullahs’ regime in Iran.” The CDU/CSU parliamentary group will put the topic back on the agenda of the Bundestag plenary session next week, he announced. Germany must “now be clearer regarding Iran and this mullah regime.”

As a precautionary measure, Lufthansa canceled all flights to Tel Aviv in Israel and Erbil in Iraq until Saturday morning. During this time Iraqi airspace will be flown, the German airline stated. When assessing the security situation, Lufthansa does not rely on government assessments but makes its own decisions. “The safety of passengers and crew is always a priority.”

Failed to fetch data from the URL.