Left Menu
Development News Edition

UPDATE 5-Iran warns U.S. and Israel of revenge after parade attack


UPDATE 5-Iran warns U.S. and Israel of revenge after parade attack

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Monday the attackers who killed 25 people at a military parade had been paid by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, and that Iran would "severely punish" those behind the bloodshed.

The deputy head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards also accused the United States and Israel of involvement in the attack and said they should expect a devastating response.

In the southwestern city of Ahvaz, thousands packed the streets to mourn the victims of Saturday's assault, many chanting "Death to Israel and America". Twelve members of the elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps were among the dead.

The coffins, wrapped in flags, were carried by mourners. Many held pictures of a four-year-old boy killed in the incident, one of the worst such attacks against Iran's most powerful military force.

Gunmen fired on a viewing stand in Ahvaz where officials had gathered to watch an annual parade marking the start of Iran's 1980-88 war with Iraq.

Fars and IRNA news agencies said on Monday five attackers were killed, not four as previously reported by state media. The body of the fifth assailant had not been identified as it was mixed up with other casualties, Fars said.

"Based on reports, this cowardly act was done by people who the Americans come to help when they are trapped in Syria and Iraq and are paid by Saudi Arabia and the UAE," Khamenei said on his website.

Guards Brigadier General Hossein Salami, in a speech broadcast on state TV, said: "You have seen our revenge before. You will see that our response will be crushing and devastating and you will regret what you have done."

Tasnim news agency quoted Salami as saying the "horrific crime" exposed the dark side of an alliance that the United States, Saudi Arabia, and Israel had created to counter Iranian influence in the region.

The secretary of Iran's National Security Council said Tehran needed to talk to its neighbors to avoid tensions.

"It's essential to be fully aware and increase our constructive dialogues to neutralize the plots of enemies who want to create suspicion and disagreement among regional countries," Ali Shamkhani said.

He also said U.S. sanctions against Iran were illegal and President Donald Trump was using them as a tool for "personal revenge".

ANTAGONISE

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, asked by a Fox News interviewer if the United States played any role in the attack, said: "When you have a security incident at home, blaming others is an enormous mistake."

The loss of innocent lives was tragic, Pompeo added. There has been no reaction from Saudi Arabia or Israel.

Accusations against Gulf countries will almost certainly antagonize Iran's regional foe, Saudi Arabia. The oil super-powers are waging a war for influence across the Middle East, backing opposite sides in Syria, Yemen, Iraq, and Lebanon.

It is, however, highly unlikely the Guards will strike any of its foes directly and risk setting off a regional conflict.

Analysts said the violence has led to a boost in domestic support for the Guards which they could use to silence their critics, who include pragmatic President Hassan Rouhani.

Rouhani engineered Iran's 2015 nuclear deal with world powers that ushered in a cautious detente with Washington before tensions flared anew with Trump's decision in May to pull out of the accord and reimpose sanctions on Tehran.

Iran's Intelligence Minister, Mahmoud Alavi, said a network of suspects had been arrested in connection with the attack, the judiciary's news agency Mizan reported. He did not elaborate.

Karim Dahimi, a human rights activist in London, told Reuters local sources had said more than 300 people had been arrested in the cities of Ahvaz, Khorramshahr, and Abadan in recent days, mostly from the Sunni Muslim community.

Ahvaz National Resistance, an Iranian ethnic Arab opposition movement which seeks a separate state in oil-rich Khuzestan province, and Islamic State have both claimed responsibility.

The Guard Corps was set up after the 1979 Islamic revolution to protect the Shi'ite clerical ruling system and revolutionary values. It answers to Ayatollah Khamenei and has an estimated 125,000-strong military with army, navy and air units.


TRENDING

OPINION/BLOG/INTERVIEW

JNU Administration's 100-meter challenge before JNUSU

For the first time in its history, Jawaharlal Nehru University JNU Administration is seeking permanent deployment of local police to keep protesting students at 100 meters away from the Administrative Block. It would be interesting to see h...

Sentiment Analysis of Twitter users during COP25: Governments losing trust on Climate Action

Sentiment analysis of Twitter users during COP25 in Madrid, being held from December 2-13, shows widespread fear on climate change due to global warming but almost no trust on governments in meeting the emission targets. In the analysis the...

These innovators are making humanitarian response more efficient

These alarming trends prompt a call for the world to not only address the ongoing crisis but also to adopt innovative approaches to fulfill the growing humanitarian needs in such emergencies. ...

Hyderabad Encounter: A sentiment analysis of public mood on day of encounter

Sentiment analysis of twitter users revealed that they showered salutes on Hyderabad police for eliminating alleged gang rapists of the veterinary doctor but only a few believe in cops version of successive events leading to encounter....

Videos

Latest News

Entry and exit gates at Janpath metro station closed as advised by Delhi Police, says DMRC. PTI GJS SNE

Entry and exit gates at Janpath metro station closed as advised by Delhi Police, says DMRC....

UPDATE 1-Thousands join biggest protest for years in Thai capital

Thousands of people joined Bangkoks biggest protest since a 2014 coup on Saturday, after authorities in Thailand moved to ban a party that has rallied opposition to the government of former military ruler Prayuth Chan-ocha. The demonstratio...

UPDATE 1-EU leads call for stronger climate ambition as U.N. summit wavers

The European Union warned on Saturday that a U.N. summit in Madrid must send a strong signal that countries are ready to do more to cut emissions, as fears grew that international efforts to fight climate change were slipping into reverse. ...

Fire erupts at Total refinery in France

A fire erupted at a Total oil refinery in northwestern France on Saturday but was brought under control and there were no injuries, local authorities said. The blaze started at about 4 am in a pump at the plant at Gonfreville-lOrcher, near ...

Give Feedback