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Iran vows to avenge their assassinated colonel’s death

Iran vows to avenge their assassinated colonel’s death

After a colonel in the powerful Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) was shot dead in Tehran on Sunday, Iran’s president has promised vengeance.

According to state media, two gunmen on a motorcycle opened fire on Sayad Khodai as he sat in a car outside his home.

They claimed Col Khodai was a member of the IRGC’s shadowy overseas operations arm, the Quds Force.

President Ebrahim Raisi blamed “global arrogance’s hands,” referring to the United States and its allies.

“I urge security officials to conduct a thorough investigation into the crime, and I have no doubt that vengeance on criminals for the pure blood of this honourable martyr is unavoidable,” he said.

According to IRGC spokesman Ramazan Sharif, Col Khodai’s “martyrdom” would strengthen the IRGC’s resolve to “defend security, independence, and national interests, as well as confront the enemies of the Iranian nation.”

No group or country has claimed responsibility for the assassination, which was the most high-profile in Iran since the death of top nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh in an attack on his convoy outside Tehran in November 2020.

Iran blamed Israel for the assassination. Although Israel has neither confirmed nor denied involvement, the former head of its Mossad intelligence agency stated last year that Fakhrizadeh had been a target “for many years.”

According to Iran’s state news agency, Irna, Col Khodai was shot with five bullets as he got out of his car in eastern Tehran around 16:00 (11:30 GMT) on Sunday.

It released images of a man slumped in the driver’s seat of a Kia Pride. The front passenger-side window appeared to be shattered.

Iran gave no details about Khodai’s role in the Quds Force, but he was referred to as a “defender of the shrine,” a term used to describe Iranian military personnel and Iran-backed militia fighters operating in Syria or Iraq.

The Quds Force is in charge of the Shia Muslim militias that fought alongside President Bashar al-troops Assad’s during Syria’s civil war.

It is also thought to command several Shia militias in Iraq, which have grown in power since assisting in the defeat of the Islamic State group.

The US accuses the Quds Force of arming, financing, and training terrorist groups throughout the Middle East, as well as being responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American troops in the region and plotting numerous other attacks. Both the IRGC and the Quds Force have been designated as terrorist organisations.

The US assassinated the Quds Force’s top commander, Gen Qasem Soleimani, in a drone strike in Iraq’s capital, Baghdad, in January 2020.

On Monday, Israeli media reported without citing sources that Col Khodai was involved in the planning of attacks on Israeli and Jewish targets around the world.

According to Haaretz, he was “likely” behind an alleged Iranian plot to kill businesspeople in Cyprus, including billionaire Teddy Sagi, as well as other attempts to harm Israeli businesspeople in Africa, South America, and Turkey.

It also mentioned a recent alleged plot in Turkey to assassinate an Israeli consulate employee, which Israeli officials said was foiled by Mossad.

Also read: 52-Year-Old Ghanaian Cab Driver Murdered In New York, USA.

When approached by Channel 12 TV during a visit to New York, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz declined to comment on Col Khodai’s death.

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