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Iran vows revenge as it accuses Israel of deadly airstrike on Syria consulate

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Iran vows revenge as it accuses Israel of deadly airstrike on Syria consulate

Iran has vowed to retaliate after it accused Israel of bombing its embassy complex in Syria.

An airstrike destroyed the consulate building in the capital Damascus on Monday,  killing at least seven officials including Mohammed Reza Zahedi, a top commander in Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards (IRGC), and senior commander Mohammad Hadi Haji Rahimi, according to Iran’s Foreign Ministry.

 

At least 6 Syrian citizens were also killed, Iranian state television reported on Tuesday.

 

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Zahedi, a former commander of the IRGC’s ground forces, air force, and the deputy commander of its operations, is the most high-profile Iranian target killed since then-US President Donald Trump ordered the assassination of IRGC Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad in 2020.

 

Iran and Syria accused Israel of authoring the attack, with Tehran warning of a “serious response,” and the powerful Iran-backed Lebanese militant group Hezbollah saying the strike will be met with “punishment and revenge.” Iran also said it would hold the United States “answerable” due to its support of Israel.

 

Iran Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Israel would be punished for the attack, while President Ebrahim Raisi said it will “not go unanswered,” state news agency IRNA reported.

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A military spokesperson said Israel believes the target struck was a “military building of Quds forces,” a unit of the IRGC responsible for foreign operations.

 

“According to our intelligence, this is no consulate and this is no embassy,” Israel Defense Forces spokesperson Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari told CNN. “I repeat, this is no consulate and this is no embassy. This is a military building of Quds forces disguised as a civilian building in Damascus.”

 

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Four unnamed Israeli officials acknowledged that Israel carried out the attack, the New York Times reported.



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