Iran said its arch enemy the us bore responsibility for the results after killing one among its top commanders, Qasem Soleimani, in an air strike Friday on Baghdad airport.
Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned of “severe revenge” for “the criminals who bloodied their foul hands together with his blood”, and vowed that “God willing, his work and his path won’t be stopped”.
The Revolutionary Guards confirmed the commander of its Quds Force had been killed by US forces in Baghdad, with secretary of state Mohammad Javad Zarif slamming the move as “foolish” and denouncing it as a “dangerous escalation”.
“The Revolutionary Guards announces that the fantastic commander of Islam, haj Qasem Soleimani, following a lifetime of servitude, was martyred in an attack by America on Baghdad airport this morning,” said a press release read out on state television.
The channel said the attack was administered by US helicopters.
A black ribbon was displayed on the screen and a photograph montage was shown with images of Soleimani smiling and praying, as Khamenei also declared three days of mourning.
Soleimani was one among the foremost popular figures in Iran and seen as a deadly adversary by America and its allies.
State television interrupted its regular programming to detail the commander’s achievements within the region, pointing to several times he “foiled” US plans.
The Islamic republic’s top security body called an emergency meeting over the attack.
“In a couple of hours, a unprecedented meeting of the Supreme National Security Council are going to be held to review the murderous attack on the vehicle of General Soleimani in Baghdad that cause his martyrdom,” ISNA quoted its secretariat spokesman Keyvan Khosravi as saying.
The foreign ministry also summoned a politician from Swiss embassy in Tehran, which represents US interests in Iran, to “strongly protest” the killing, consistent with a tweet by ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi.
“The US’ act of terrorism , targeting and assassinating General Soleimani… is extremely dangerous and a foolish escalation,” Zarif wrote on Twitter.
“The US bears responsibility for all consequences of its rogue adventurism,” he added.
In a statement, the foreign ministry said the us would buy the “atrocity”.
“The malice and stupidity of America’s terrorist forces in assassinating General Soleimani, this hero martyr and therefore the leader of combatting terrorism and extremism, will definitely further empower the tree of resistance within the region and therefore the world,” it said.
The ministry said it might “use all its political legal and international capacities to enact the choices of the Supreme National Security Council to form the murderous and terrorist regime of America account this clear atrocity.”
Zarif and his top deputies were in an urgent meeting at the ministry as of 07:00 AM (0330 GMT) to assess things , spokesman Abbas Mousavi said during a tweet.
A former head of the Guards said also revenge would be exacted on the us for Soleimani’s death.
“Soleimani joined his martyr brothers but we’ll exact terrible vengeance upon America,” Mohsen Rezai, who currently heads the Expediency Council, wrote on Twitter.
Tehran-based analyst Mohammad Marandi said the US has “declared war” against Iran and Iraq, and “it’s best for westerners to evacuate countries like UAE and Iraq immediately”.
“By assassinating General Soleimani & Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, both high ranking military officials, Trump has declared war against the soldiers of both Iran & Iraq. it’s best for all americans to go away the region immediately. US occupiers are going to be forced to go away Iraq.”