Iran vows ‘severe retaliation’ to avenge General Qassem Soleimani’s killing by US forces

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Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has said that ‘severe retaliation’ awaited those who killed General Qassem Soleimani, the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ elite Quds Force in Iraq. According to a statement broadcast on the Iranian state TV, Khamenei warned of ‘severe retaliation’ for ‘the criminals who bloodied their foul hands with his blood’ and vowed that ‘God willing, his work and his path will not be stopped.’

General Qassem Soleimani

Iranian state news agency Tasnim also reported that three days of public mourning had been announced by the government.

The Revolutionary Guards also confirmed the killing of its commander in Iraq. Its statement read, “The Revolutionary Guards announces that the glorious commander of Islam, haj Qasem Soleimani, following a life of servitude, was martyred in an attack by America on Baghdad airport this morning.”

Iran’s warning on ‘severe retaliation’ came after the country’s foreign minister, Javad Zarif, said that the US will have to bear ‘responsibility for all consequences of its rogue adventurism.’ He wrote on Twitter, “The US’ act of international terrorism, targeting & assassinating General Soleimani—THE most effective force fighting Daesh (ISIS), Al Nusrah, Al Qaeda et al—is extremely dangerous & a foolish escalation. The US bears responsibility for all consequences of its rogue adventurism.”



General Soleimani was travelling in a convoy of two cars outside Baghdad airport when he was hit by a US airstrike. Also travelling with him were local Iran-backed militias. He was believed to have arrived from either Lebanon or Syria. His car was reportedly hit by several missiles, killing at least eight people.

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