Iran’s top commander warns Israel it committed ‘suicide’ with Damascus attack

The top commander of Iran’s military warned Israel on Sunday that it would retaliate after Israel launched an attack Monday that destroyed Iran’s consulate in Damascus, the capital of Syria.

Brig. Gen. Mohammad Reza Zahedi, a top commander in the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, was killed in the strike with his deputy, Gen. Mohammad Hadi Hajriahimi. The Quds Force specializes in unconventional warfare and military intelligence.

Maj. Gen. Mohammad Hossein Bagheri, Iran’s top military commander, said in a statement to the semi-official Iranian Students’ News Agency that the Israeli strike would not go unanswered and that the retaliation would be carried out “with precision.”

He said the Damascus strike was “suicide committed by Israel” and would lead to the destruction of U.S.-backed Israel, which has also been conducting military operations in neighboring Lebanon and the occupied Palestinian territory of Gaza.

The commander warned the United States that it blamed America for Israel’s actions and said the U.S. should be held accountable. Israel and its allies had already been bracing for retaliation since Israel’s attack, leading U.S. officials to believe Iran could target American assets in the region.

Mohammad Jamshidi, the deputy head of the Iranian president’s office for political affairs, said Friday on social media that United States officials have asked Iran not to target American assets in its retaliation. Iranian media has suggested Israel conducted the strike to drag the U.S. into direct conflict with Iran.

The speaker of the Iranian Parliament, Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, said during a parliamentary session on Sunday that Israel’s airstrike on a diplomatic mission shows that Israel “brazenly violates all international law,” according to Iran’s Tasnim News Agency. Maj. Gen. Yahya Rahim Safavi warned Sunday that Israeli embassies are now no longer safe.

Safavi also encouraged the Palestinian militia Hamas to preserve its strength and continue its offensive operations against Israel, as he said that the Israeli occupation has led to “war crimes, genocide, rape and famine.”

U.N. experts have previously expressed alarm at reports of rape of Palestinian women amid the war, while experts have long expressed concern of sexual violence against Palestinian women detained by Israeli forces. And Israel is currently facing charges of genocide levied by South Africa.

Source: UPI

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