Issuing a message on Sunday, Kamal Kharrazi, who is also a former Iranian foreign minister, condemned the assassination, noting that the Iranian scientist lost no opportunity to achieve his scientific objectives with the final goal of ensuring the security of his country.
“There is no doubt that the Islamic Republic of Iran will give a calculated and categorical response to those criminals who took Fakhrizadeh from the Iranian nation,” Kharrazi said, after expressing condolences to Fakhrizadeh’s family, his colleagues and the entire Iranian nation.
Fakhrizadeh, the head the Iranian Defense Ministry’s Organization of Defensive Innovation and Research, was targeted in a multi-pronged terrorist attack by a number of assailants in Absard city of Tehran Province’s Damavand County on Friday.
Following his assassination, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei called on Iranian experts to preserve the scientific and technical legacy of the nuclear scientist.
“One of our country’s eminent scientists in the nuclear and defense fields – Dr. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh -has been martyred by brutal mercenaries. With his great, enduring scientific efforts, he sacrificed his life on the path of God and the lofty status of martyrdom is his divine reward,” the Leader said in a message released on Saturday.
The chief commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) also warned that “a severe revenge and punishment” has been put on Iran’s agenda in response to the assassination of a high-profile nuclear scientist.
“The blind-hearted enemies of the Iranian nation, especially those who designed, perpetrated and supported this crime, should know that such crimes will not undermine the Iranians’ will and determination to continue this glorious and powerful path, and that a severe revenge and punishment is put on the agenda,” Major General Hossein Salami added.
Earlier on Sunday, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the recent assassination of a senior Iranian nuclear scientist bears the clear hallmark of atrocities committed by the Israeli regime, which has already murdered a number of Iran’s scientific elites.
The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, the country’s nuclear agency, has likewise suspected Israeli involvement in both the assassination and a July incident at Iran’s Natanz nuclear facility. “It looks like the Zionist regime [of Israel] has a role in these issues,” AEOI Spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi said on Saturday.
On Friday, the New York Times reported that an American official and two other intelligence officials confirmed Israel was behind the targeted killing.
“One American official — along with two other intelligence officials — said that Israel was behind the attack on the scientist,” The New York Times said, adding, “It was unclear how much the United States may have known about the operation in advance, but the two nations are the closest of allies and have long shared intelligence regarding Iran.”
Intelligence Ministry: Clues found on Fakhrizadeh’s assassination
Later on Sunday, Iran’s Intelligence Ministry released a short statement, announcing that its agents have come across clues with regard to the assassination of top Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh.
“While expressing condolences on the martyrdom of Dr. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh … hereby it is announced that … certain clues on the protagonists of this terrorist attack have been found through intelligence work … whose details will be made public later,” the ministry said.
All forms of terrorism unacceptable: Oman foreign minister
In a related development on Sunday, Omani Foreign Minister Badr al-Busaidi condemned the terrorist attack, which led to the assassination of top Iranian physicist, saying that all forms of terrorism are rejected and unacceptable.
In a phone call with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, the top Omani diplomat also expressed his sympathy with the Iranian government and people.
This came after the Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal al-Mekdad and the head of the political bureau of the Gaza-based Palestinian resistance movement, Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, condemned Fakhrizadeh’s assassination by suspected Israel-tied terrorists in separate phone calls with Zarif on Saturday.
Iraq, Azerbaijan condemn assassination of Iran’s top nuclear scientist
Also on Sunday, Iraq’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Fuad Hussein called his Iranian counterpart to discuss the assassination of Iran’s top nuclear scientist.
During the phone call, Fuad Hussein strongly condemned assassination of Fakhrizadeh and expressed condolences of the Iraqi government and nation as well as their sympathy with the Iranian people.
In another phone call to Zarif the same day, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Azerbaijan Jeyhun Bayramov expressed his country’s condolences on the assassination of Iran’s nuclear scientist.
Bayramov strongly condemned Fakhrizadeh’s assassination as an “inhumane act” and discussed bilateral relations as well as other matters of mutual interest with his Iranian counterpart.
Chairman of Russia’s State Duma committee condemns Fakhrizadeh’s assassination
In another development no Sunday, Chairman of the State Duma’s Foreign Affairs Committee Leonid Slutsky condemned the assassination of Iran’s nuclear scientist, nothing that the terror attack was aimed at provoking Iran.
“The murder of Iranian physicist Fakhrizadeh is a terrorist attack aimed at new provocation against Tehran. It’s important to prevent the escalation of tensions in the region,” the lawmaker wrote on his Twitter account.