GeneralQasem Suleimani

Iran says resolved to stop US destabilizing acts, force pullout from region

Secretary of Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani has said Iran is resolved to stop the United States and its stooges from committing acts of terrorism and destabilizing the region and to eventually force a complete US troop withdrawal.

Speaking at a meeting with Afghan president’s national security advisor Hamdullah Mohib, in Tehran on Tuesday, Shamkhani said that the US acts of insecurity in West Asia reached their peak with the “cowardly” assassination of top Iranian and Iraqi anti-terror commanders, Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran is resolved to prevent the continuation of the terrorist, tension-fueling and destabilizing acts of the United States and its stooges and make them leave the region by exacting a severe revenge against those who ordered and perpetrated a crime that will go down in history,” he added.

US President Donald Trump ordered a fatal drone strike on General Soleimani’s vehicle upon his arrival in Baghdad International Airport on January 3 at the invitation of the Iraqi government.

The attack also killed Muhandis, the second-in-command of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), as well as eight other Iranian and Iraqi people.

The two commanders were highly popular because of the key role they played in eliminating the US-sponsored Daesh terrorist group in the region, particularly in Iraq and Syria.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Shamkhani referred to the threats facing both Iran and Afghanistan and their common interests, especially the need to stop the spread of terrorism and to restore stability and security in the region.

Warning of increased Daesh activity in Afghanistan and the dangers it posed to regional states, he called for collective vigilance and cooperation to fully eliminate “the cancerous tumor.”

Iran’s security chief also highlighted the Islamic Republic’s principal policy of strengthening good neighborliness. “Afghanistan has a special place in Irans’s foreign policy due to numerous commonalities that bond the two nations,” he said.

Shamkhani further stressed Iran’s firm support for the legitimate government of Afghanistan, underlining the need for enhanced Tehran-Kabul cooperation and interaction in political, economic and security areas.

Additionally, he expressed his satisfaction with the opening of the Khaf-Herat railroad and hoped that the project could play an effective role in promoting bilateral relations and improving the welfare of the Afghan people.

Mohib, for his part, voiced the readiness of the Afghan government and nation to boost cooperation with Iran, which he described as his second home.

He further appreciated the unwavering support and hospitality Iran has offered to the Afghan people over the past 40 years.

Also on Tuesday, the Afghan official held a meeting with Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.

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