Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps’ Navy Rear Admiral Ali Tangsiri vowed tough revenge for assassination of IRGC Qods Force Commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, stressing that Iran and not Washington will decide about the time and geography of its revenge.
“The enemies will see that people similar to Hajj Qassem will take a harsh revenge but we will decide about the time and geography of revenge not the enemies,” Rear Admiral Tangsiri told reporters on the sidelines of the funeral ceremony of General Soleimani in the Southeastern city of Kerman on Tuesday.
“Our message to the enemies is to leave the region; their staying is both a problem for the region and will inflict very heavy costs on them; they should leave the region before being revenged harshly,” he added.
Rear Admiral Tangsiri underscored Iran’s full preparedness to confront enemies on seas and islands, noting that the IRGC Naval forces will increase their readiness more than ever after assassination of General Soleimani.
Lieutenant General Soleimani was martyred in a targeted assassination attack by the US drones at Baghdad International Airport early on Friday morning.
The airstrike also martyred Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, deputy commander of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), or Hashad al-Shaabi. The PMF media arm said the two were martyred in an American airstrike that targeted their vehicle on the road to the airport.
Five Iranian and five Iraqi militaries were martyred by missiles fired by the US drone at Baghdad International Airport.
The Pentagon confirmed the attack in a statement.
The attack came amid tensions that started by the US attack on PMF units that killed 28 Iraqi popular forces. A day later, Iraqi people attacked the US embassy in Baghdad. On Wednesday President Donald Trump ordered about 750 US soldiers deployed to the Middle East.
US officials earlier suggested they were to engage in further retaliatory attacks in Iraq.
The developments also represent a major downturn in Iraq-US relations that could further undermine US influence in the region and American troops in Iraq and weaken Washington’s hand in its pressure campaign against Iran.
US President Donald Trump was vacationing on his estate in Palm Beach, Florida, but sent out a tweet of an American flag.
The attack represents a dramatic escalation by the US toward Iran after months of tensions. The tensions take root in Trump’s decision in May 2018 to withdraw the US from Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers, struck under his predecessor.