Another victim of the bombing was the head of the People's Mobilization Forces (PMF) and commander of the Kataib Hezbollah (KH) militia, Abu Mahdi al Muhandis.
"The attack was intended to deter future Iranian plans of attack," the Pentagon said, accusing Soleimani of "actively developing plans to attack American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region.
The U.S. Department of Defense said in a statement that, "under the direction of President Donald Trump, the Army took defensive measures to protect U.S. personnel overseas."
The assassination of Qassem Soleimani, 63, head of the Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, led to a serious escalation of tensions in the region.
Iran responded days later with missile attacks on two Iraqi military bases housing U.S. troops.