2019 Khash–Zahedan suicide bombing

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2019 Khash–Zahedan suicide bombing
LocationKurin District, Sistan-Baluchestan, Iran
Date13 February 2019 (UTC+4½)
TargetIRGC
Attack type
Suicide bombing
Deaths27 (+1 attacker)
Injuries
13
PerpetratorsJaish al-Adl

On February 13, 2019, a suicide bombing on the KhashZahedan road in Sistan and Baluchestan Province of Iran killed at least 27 Revolutionary Guards and wounded another 13.[1][2][3] It was one of the deadliest terrorist attacks in Iran in years.[3]

Sunni extremist militant group Jaish al-Adl ("Army of Justice") said it carried out the bombing.[4]

Bombing[edit]

The bomber targeted a bus transporting personnel on the Khash–Zahedan road (Road 95) in Sistan and Baluchestan province, near the border with Pakistan. The area is a refuge for militant separatist groups and drug smugglers. The bomber detonated a car full of explosives near near the bus,[3] killing 27 Revolutionary Guards and injuring 13.[4] The soldiers were coming back to their cities after carrying out the border mission by the bus.[3][5]

Jaish al-Adl, a group connected to Al Qaeda and involved in some of the recent terrorist activities in southeast Iran took responsibility for the suicide bombing.[3] In October 2018, 11 Iranian border Guards were kidnapped by the group, only 5 of them were released.[4]

The Senior Revolutionary Guards commander of Iran said that the suicide bomber was a Pakistani national and one other member of the militant cell that planned the attack was also Pakistani.[6] Furthermore, he claimed that three other members of militant cells were Iranian nationals from Sistan and Baluchestan. Out of those three Iranians, two were arrested.[7]

Reactions[edit]

Iranian Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari alleged that United States and Israel ordered Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates to carry out the attack.[8] He also asked Pakistan to conduct crack down against armed group Jaish al-Adl before Tehran takes it revenge.[9] Pakistan offered Iran cooperation in investigating the bombing, and expressed sympathy for the victims of the attack. A Pakistani delegation was due to travel to Iran.[10]

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif linked the suicide bombing targeting the country's elite Revolution Guard to an ongoing, U.S.-sponsored Mideast meeting in Warsaw. Zarif tweeted Wednesday night: "Is it no coincidence that Iran is hit by terror on the very day that #WarsawCircus begins?[5] Especially when cohorts of same terrorists cheer it from Warsaw streets & support it with twitter bots?"[11]

Ali Khamenei, Supreme Leader of Iran declared that "It is evidently certain that the perpetrators of this crime are connected to the intelligence services of some of the countries inside as well as outside the region".[12]

Iranian president, Hassan Rouhani claimed that Israel and United States of America were behind the attack on Iranian Revolutionary Guards bus. He also vowed revenge against Jaish Al-Adl.[13]

Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi met with India's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and referring to both the 2019 Khash–Zahedan suicide bombing and the 2019 Pulwama attack, he stated: "Iran and India suffered from two heinous terrorist attacks in the past few days resulted in big casualties. Today in my meeting with Sushma Swaraj the Indian FM, when she had a stopover in Tehran, we agreed on close cooperation to combat terrorism in the region. Enough is enough!"[14]

Bahram Qassemi, Iran Foreign Ministry spokesman declared "Tehran will avenge the attack".[5][15]

Ali Larijani, Iran's parliament speaker blamed Pakistan for the attack, saying that the attack was "planned and carried out from inside Pakistan".[16]

Bahram Ghasemi, speaking for the Foreign Ministry of Iran, said it would not tolerate what it saw as Pakistan's "inability to stop cross-border attacks in Iran".[17] Muhammad Beghari, the military commander of Iran, told Pakistan to "either confront the terrorist groups or allow Iranian forces in".[17]

Mourning[edit]

The mourning for the victims was held one day after the attack in Isfahan, Iran. The bodies of the victims were flown to Isfahan where press representatives and the affected families were waiting. The mourning ceremony was widely covered by media in Iran and the interview with families of the victims went viral in Iranian social media.[18]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "تازه‌ترین اخبار حمله انتحاری به اتوبوس حامل رزمندگان سپاه- ۲۷ شهید و ۱۳ مجروح تاکنون- انتقال مجروحین به زاهدان". Tasnim. Retrieved 13 February 2019.
  2. ^ "Iran suicide bombing 'kills 20 Revolutionary Guards'". BBC. 13 February 2019. Retrieved 13 February 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d e "Bombing Kills 41 Revolutionary Guards in Iran, Government Says". New York Times. 13 February 2019. Retrieved 13 February 2019.
  4. ^ a b c Vahdat, Amir; Gambrell, Jon. "Suicide bomber targeting Iran's Revolutionary Gard kills 27". Washington Post. Archived from the original on 14 February 2019. Retrieved 13 February 2019.
  5. ^ a b c "Zarif says 'no coincidence' terrorists strike as anti-Iran summit begins". Press TV. Retrieved 13 February 2019.
  6. ^ "Suicide bomber who killed 27 members of Iran's Guards was Pakistani - Guards commander". www.euronews.com. Retrieved 2019-02-19.
  7. ^ "Suspected Suicide Bomber Was Pakistani: Iran Guards Commander". Radio Farda. 19 February 2019.
  8. ^ "After blaming Israel and Gulf, Iran now fingers Pakistan over deadly bus attack". Times of Israel. 17 February 2019.
  9. ^ "Iran warns Pakistan to crack down on Jaish al-Adl". Al Jazeera. 16 February 2019.
  10. ^ Pakistan offers cooperation to Iran over probe into attack, The Dawn.
  11. ^ "The Latest: Iran FM links bus bombing to Warsaw meeting". Washington Post. 13 February 2019. Retrieved 13 February 2019.
  12. ^ "Ayatollah Khamenei's message". khamenei. Retrieved 14 February 2019.
  13. ^ "Rouhani claims Israel, US behind deadly suicide bombing in Iran". Times of Israel. 14 February 2019.
  14. ^ "Enough is enough, says Iran in talks with India after Pak-based terror groups attack both countries". India Today. 17 February 2019.
  15. ^ "Terrorists attack IRGC bus; Iran vows revenge". Press TV. Retrieved 13 February 2019.
  16. ^ Press, Associated. "Iran points to Pakistan after deadly attack on Guard". Washington Post. Archived from the original on 17 February 2019.
  17. ^ a b "'Either Confront Terrorist Groups Or Allow Iranian Forces To Enter': Iran Threatens Pakistan". Naya Daur. 19 February 2019. Retrieved 20 February 2019.
  18. ^ IRIB News Agency (15 February 2019). "Mourning for victims of terrorist attack February 2019 in Zahedan Iran- Interview with families". Retrieved 16 February 2019.

Coordinates: 28°52′54″N 60°40′44″E / 28.881629°N 60.678916°E / 28.881629; 60.678916