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Attack on Iran consulate in Damascus: What do we know? | Conflict News


Iran has promised a response after its consulate within the Syrian capital Damascus was destroyed in a suspected Israeli missile assault, killing seven folks together with a high commander and his deputy.

Brigadier Normal Mohammad Reza Zahedi, a senior commander within the Quds Power of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) and his deputy Normal Mohammad Hadi Hajriahimi have been killed in Monday’s assault, the IRGC stated in a press release.

Israel has lengthy focused Iran’s army installations in Syria and people of its proxies however Monday’s assault was the primary time it had focused the embassy compound itself.

Right here’s what we all know:

What occurred?

The consulate, which is subsequent to the principle embassy constructing in Damascus’s Mezzeh district, was struck at about 5pm (14:00 GMT) on Monday.

Pictures from the scene confirmed piles of rubble and twisted metal with an Iranian flag nonetheless hanging from a pole close by.

Who was there?

A number of IRGC army advisers have been within the constructing on the time of the assault and 7 have been killed, in accordance with the IRGC assertion.

The assertion stated Zahedi and Hajriahimi have been among the many lifeless.

Zahedi was the chief of the Quds Power in Lebanon and Syria till 2016, it stated.

The UK-based battle monitor, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, stated as many as 11 folks had been killed, together with eight Iranians, two Syrians and one Lebanese, all of them fighters.

How has Iran reacted?

Iran’s Ambassador to Syria, Hossein Akbari, who was not injured within the assault, stated Tehran’s response can be “decisive”.

Iran’s Overseas Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian described the assault “as a violation of all worldwide obligations and conventions” and blamed Israel.

In a separate assertion, Iran’s Overseas Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani stated that Iran “reserves the appropriate to hold out a response and can resolve on the kind of response and the punishment of the aggressor”.

Iran’s mission to the United Nations stated the strike was a “flagrant violation of the United Nations Constitution, worldwide regulation, and the foundational precept of the inviolability of diplomatic and consular premises”.

Saying the strike was “a big menace to regional peace and safety”, the Iranian mission urged the UN Safety Council to sentence the assault and stated Tehran reserved the appropriate “to take a decisive response”.

Protesters took to the streets of Tehran to sentence Israel over the assault.

How have others reacted?

Syria stated “innocents” had been killed within the strike.

“We strongly condemn this atrocious terrorist assault that focused the Iranian consulate constructing in Damascus and killed a variety of innocents,” stated Syrian Overseas Minister Faisal Mekdad who visited the scene of the assault together with Syria’s inside minister.

Russia, an ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, additionally joined the condemnation.

“We strongly condemn this unacceptable assault towards the Iranian consular mission in Syria,” Russia’s Overseas Ministry stated in a press release.

Protesters in Tehran. They are holding up posters of Iranian Revolutionary Guard Gen. Qassem Soleimani, who was killed in a US drone attack in 2020.
There have been protests in Tehran after the assault with folks carrying posters for the IRGC’s Qassem Soleimani, who was killed in a US drone assault in 2020 [Vahid Salemi/AP]

Lebanon’s Iran-backed Hezbollah group warned that Israel would pay for the assault.

Hezbollah has exchanged near-daily cross-border fireplace with Israel in assist of its ally Hamas for the reason that Gaza battle erupted in October.

“Definitely, this crime is not going to go with out the enemy receiving punishment and revenge,” Hezbollah stated in a press release on Tuesday. It added that Zahedi was “one of many first to assist, sacrifice, and persevere for a few years to develop and advance the work of the resistance [Hezbollah] in Lebanon”.

Muslim nations together with Iraq, Jordan, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates additionally condemned the assault.

In america, in the meantime, State Division spokesperson Matthew Miller advised reporters that Washington remained “involved about something that will be escalatory or trigger a rise in battle within the area”.

When requested in regards to the assault, an Israeli army spokesperson advised journalists: “We don’t touch upon studies within the international media.”

The New York Instances cited 4 unnamed Israeli officers as acknowledging that Israel was liable for the assault.

What may the results be?

The assault appeared to suggest an escalation of Israel’s focusing on of army officers from Iran, which gives cash and weapons to hardline teams combating Israel in Gaza and alongside its border with Lebanon.

However analysts seem divided over whether or not the motion would convey a few regional battle.

Jon Alterman of the Heart for Strategic and Worldwide Research in Washington, DC, stated Israel most likely noticed the strike extra as a deterrent.

“The Israelis are satisfied that in the event that they search to hold again, the menace will develop and never diminish,” he stated. “They’re persuaded that so long as they do one thing like this periodically, their adversaries might be deterred.”

Nevertheless, Steven Prepare dinner, an analyst on the Council on Overseas Relations in Washington, stated there was a hazard of escalation.

“The IRGC can loosen restraints on proxies in Iraq and Syria, inserting American forces in jeopardy once more,” he stated. “The Iranians may additionally direct Hezbollah to escalate its assaults on Israel, which have been rising bolder and extra quite a few.”

The chief spokesman for Israel’s military, Daniel Hagari, stated a drone assault on a naval base in southern Israel in a while Monday was “directed by Iran” and precipitated no accidents.

Early on Tuesday, the Israeli army stated some form of weapon fired from Syria in direction of Israel crashed earlier than reaching its supposed goal.

Ali Vaez, the director of the Worldwide Disaster Group’s Iran Mission, agreed there was a danger of expanded battle however that it may not be of an excessive amount of concern to Israel.

“[This] places Israel in a win-win state of affairs as a result of Israel is aware of Iran doesn’t need to get dragged right into a regional battle, so if it escalates its assaults towards Iranian property and personnel in Syria, it most likely might be cost-free and if Iran does reply and retaliate, then it turns into a justified pretext for increasing the battle.”



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