IRGC confirms reports on Qassem Soleimani martyrdom

January 3, 2020 - 10:30

TEHRAN — The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) said in a statement on Friday that Commander of the IRGC Quds Force Major General Qassem Soleimani was martyred in an airstrike at Baghdad’s international airport on Friday morning.

The U.S. airstrike also martyred Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMU) and some of other forces of the PMU along with their guests.

In a statement, the PMU announced the Israeli regime and the U.S. are behind this act of terror.

Pentagon had announced earlier that General Soleimani was killed on the U.S. President Donald Trump’s order.

According to the New York Times, the top Iranian general was killed when an American MQ-9 Reaper drone fired missiles into a convoy that was leaving the airport.

The strike was a serious escalation of Trump’s growing confrontation with Tehran, which began almost a week ago when U.S. forces conducted drone strikes on locations of the PMU forces in Iraq, killing at least 25 individuals and leaving another 51 injured.

The attacks came in response to alleged attacks targeting American forces.

On Wednesday, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said the United States’ attacks on PMU, also known as al-Hashd al-Shaabi, was an act of retaliation against the forces for beating the Daesh (ISIS) terrorist group.

“See what they (the Americans) are doing in Iraq and Syria. They are taking vengeance on Hashd al-Shaabi for Daesh,” Ayatollah Khamenei said.

The Leader explained that Hashd al-Shaabi had crushed Daesh, which was created and backed by the Americans, in different areas.

“Now they are taking vengeance,” he reiterated.

Following the Friday strike, Ayatollah Khamenei said a tough revenge awaits the criminals who martyred General Soleimani and others.

General Soleimani was at frontline positions in battles against ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

Back in November 2017, he issued a statement declaring the end of ISIS, as the Iraqi and Syrian armies, backed by popular forces and Iranian military advisors, managed to flush Daesh militants out of their last strongholds in both countries.

In his statement, Soleimani thanked Ayatollah Khamenei’s wise leadership, the sacrifices of Iraqi and Syrian people and governments as well as the defenders of the shrine for their courageous fight against the terrorist group.

MH/
 

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