Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei says those who assassinated IRGC Quds Force Commander Major General Qassem Soleimani must await a harsh revenge.
In a statement on Friday, Ayatollah Khamenei said the “cruelest people on earth” assassinated the “honorable” commander who “courageously fought for years against the evils and bandits of the world.”
His demise will not stop his mission, but the criminals who have the blood of General Soleimani and other martyrs of the Thursday night attack on their hands must await a harsh revenge, the Leader added.
“Martyr Soleimani is an international figure of the Resistance, and all the devotees of Resistance are now his avengers,” Ayatollah Khamenei said.
“All the friends and foes must know that the path of Jihad of the Resistance will continue with double motivation, and a definite victory awaits those who fight in this auspicious path,” the Leader said.
“The demise of our selfless and dear general is bitter, but the continued fight and achievement of the final victory will make life bitterer for the murderers and criminals,” he added.
In his statement, the Leader also offered condolences to the Iranian nation and General Soleimani’s family, and declared three days of national mourning.
Following the Leader’s remarks, President Hassan Rouhani strongly condemned the attack, and said the US assassination will make Iran and other free nations more determined to stand against Washington.
“The martyrdom of the great commander of Islam and Iran, and the courageous commander of the Quds Force, Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, along with some of his companions especially the great fighter Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, by the aggressive and criminal US broke the heart of the entire nation of Iran and regional nations,” President Rouhani said in a Friday statement.
The assassination “doubled the determination of the great nation of Iran and other free nations to stand against and resist the excessive demands of the US and to defend the Islamic values,” he added.
“There is no doubt that this cowardly and evil move is another sign of the US’ desperation, inability and failure in the region, and the hatred felt by the regional nations toward this criminal regime,” Rouhani noted.
“The great nation of Iran and other free nations of the region will take revenge for this heinous crime against the criminal US,” he warned.
Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami also vowed that revenge will be taken against all those behind the assassination.
“Undoubtedly, this heinous crime which is a strong proof of the evil nature of the Big Satan, the arrogant US and it’s all-out support for terrorism in the region and Iraq, will be responded to in a crushing way,” the defense minister warned.
Earlier, former commander of the IRGC Major General Mohsen Rezaei also vowed a harsh revenge against the perpetrators.
Details of the attack
Speaking to Iran’s state TV, the Iranian ambassador to Baghdad Iraj Masjedi explained that the US’ missile attacks hit two cars transferring General Soleimani, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, and 10 companions and bodyguards from Baghdad Airport to the city at 1 am (local time).
According to Masjedi, all the passengers have been killed, and arrangements are being made for their return to the Islamic Republic of Iran.