Terror Attack On Military Parade In Iran Leaves 25 Dead, 60 Wounded

Elias Hubbard
September 24, 2018

Iran's Revolutionary Guards vowed on Sunday to wreak "deadly and unforgettable" vengeance for the attack, which killed 12 of their comrades, and Tehran accused USA -backed Gulf Arab states of backing the gunmen.

The parade was being held to mark the anniversary of the start of the war with Iraq in 1980.

The region's Arab separatists, once only known for nighttime attacks on unguarded oil pipelines, claimed responsibility for the assault, and Iranian officials appeared to believe the claim.

The separatist group Patriotic Arab Democratic Movement in Ahwaz claimed responsibility for the attack, according to IRNA.

No evidence was provided for either of the two claims. All four attackers were killed. The Guards are entrenched in those countries to defend Iranian interests.

"The terrorists disguised as Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) and Basiji (volunteer) forces opened fire to the authority and people from behind the stand during the parade", the governor of Khuzestan, Gholam-Reza Shariati, said, according to IRNA.

"The Islamic republic will give a crushing response to the slightest threat against the country", he vowed.

Iran's Revolutionary Guard is a paramilitary force answerable only to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

A video distributed to Iranian media showed soldiers crawling as gunfire blazed towards them. One picked up a gun and scrambled to his feet as women and children fled for their lives.

"Of the four terrorists, three were sent to hell at the scene, while the fourth who had been wounded and arrested went to hell moments ago due to his severe wounds", Mr Shekarchi told state television.

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Earlier reports described the attackers as "Takfiri gunmen", a term used in the past to describe Sunni Muslim militants.

The deadly shooting targeted the city of Ahvaz in Khuzestan, a province bordering Iraq that has a large ethnic Arab community and has seen separatist violence in the past which Iran has blamed on its regional rivals.

Iran's Foreign Ministry summoned the United Arab Emirates' charge d'affaires on Sunday over comments made about the bloody fusillade at the military parade, state-run PressTV said. He did not elaborate.

"These terrorists. were trained and organised by two".

Armed forces spokesman Brigadier General Abolfazl Shekarchi said the dead included a young girl and a former serviceman in a wheelchair.

"They are not from Daesh or other groups fighting (Iran's) Islamic system. but they are linked to America and (Israel's intelligence agency) Mossad".

"We won't wait for the battle to be in Saudi Arabia", he said.

Qassemi added that releasing such annual reports by the United States is nothing, but a blame-game move aimed at leveling accusations against others.

Both countries have been struggling for regional political and religious dominance for decades, and are engaged in a number of proxy wars around the region, backing rival factions in Yemen and Syria.

"It is absolutely clear to us who has done this, which group it is and to whom they are affiliated", Rouhani said on state television on Sunday, shortly before leaving Tehran for the United Nations General Assembly in NY.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Hezbollah, two of Iran's closest allies, issued statements condemning the attack, with Assad referencing outside involvement and Hezbollah echoing allegations of United States blame.

In New York, Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani said on Saturday that US sanctions were inflicting economic pain on Iran that could lead to a "successful revolution".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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