RNA - Undoubtedly, those who have ordered this crime and the perpetrators of it must await severe revenege which would make them regret their decision, said the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Iran, in a statement issued hours after Lieutenant General Soleimani was assassinated by American terrorists at Baghdad airport.
The announcement lauded General Soleimani’s unique and significant role in fighting terrorist groups and US-backed Takfiri criminals to defend the cause of Islam.
“The Islamic nation, particularly the respectable nation of Iraq, are themselves well aware of the sacrifices of this distinguished martyr along with the toiling people of Iraq and champions of Hashd al-Shaabi in the fight against Takfiri terrorists in that land where for many times the sacred blood of the youth of Iran and Iraq were shed for defending Islam,” read the statement.
The communique concluded with a pledge to deliver a strong blow to the US and Isreal.
Commander of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Qods Force Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani was martyred in a targeted assassination attack by US aircraft at Baghdad International Airport early Friday morning.
"General Qassem Soleimani has been martyred by the US helicopters after lifetime efforts," the IRGC said in a statement early Friday morning.
The airstrike also martyred Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, deputy commander of Iraq's Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), or Hashad al-Shabi. The PMF media arm said the two were martyred in an American airstrike that targeted their vehicle on the road to the airport.
A PMF official said seven people were martyred by missiles fired by the US helicopters at Baghdad International Airport.
He said the dead included the PMF airport protocol officer, Mohammed Reda.
The Pentagon confirmed the attack in a statement.
The attack came amid tensions that started by the US attack on PMF units that killed 28 Iraqi popular forces. A day later, Iraqi people attacked the US embassy in Baghdad. On Wednesday President Donald Trump ordered about 750 US soldiers deployed to the Middle East.
US officials earlier suggested they were to engage in further retaliatory attacks in Iraq.
The developments also represent a major downturn in Iraq-US relations that could further undermine US influence in the region and American troops in Iraq and weaken Washington’s hand in its pressure campaign against Iran.
US President Donald Trump was vacationing on his estate in Palm Beach, Florida, but sent out a tweet of an American flag.
The attack represents a dramatic escalation by the US toward Iran after months of tensions. The tensions take root in Trump’s decision in May 2018 to withdraw the US from Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers, struck under his predecessor.