Iran commander warns of 'severe revenge' for scientist assassination

Iran commander warns of 'severe revenge' for scientist assassination
Iran's armed forces chief of staff Major General Mohammad Bagheri warned that 'severe revenge awaits' whoever assassinated Mohsen Fakhrizadeh
2 min read
27 November, 2020
Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was assasinated [Wiki]

Iran's armed forces chief of staff Major General Mohammad Bagheri warned of "severe revenge" for those behind the assassination Friday of a top nuclear scientist outside Tehran.

"Terrorist groups and the leaders and the perpetrators of this cowardly attempt should know that severe revenge awaits them," he said in a tweet reported by state news agency IRNA.

Bagheri called the death of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh "a bitter and heavy blow" and added "we assure (Iranians) that we will not rest until we have chased and punished" those involved.

The tweet comes shortly after Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Twitter that there were "serious indications of (an) Israeli role" in the assassination of Fakhrizadeh. 

"Terrorists murdered an eminent Iranian scientist today. This cowardice -- with serious indications of Israeli role -- shows desperate warmongering of perpetrators," Zarif said.

He also called on the international community to "end their shameful double standards and condemn this act of state terror."

The Iranian semi-official Tasnim news agency reported that Mohsen Fakhrizadeh - widely viewed as the architect of Iran's contentious nuclear programme - was shot dead in the small Iranian city of Absard east of Tehran.

Another semi-official news agency, Fars, said witnesses heard the sound of an explosion and then machine gun fire. The attack targeted a car that Fakhrizadeh was in.

The area around Absard is filled with vacation villas for the Iranian elite with a view of Mount Damavand, the highest peak in the country. Roads on Friday, part of the Iranian weekend, were emptier than normal due to a lockdown over the coronavirus pandemic, offering his attackers a chance to strike with fewer people around.

The wounded, including Fakhrizadeh's bodyguards, were later taken to a local hospital, according to Fars.

State television on its website later published a photograph of security forces blocking off the road. Photos and video shared online showed a Nissan sedan with bullet holes through the windshield and blood pooled on the road.

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