“At present, hundreds of suicide terrorists have been mobilized and equipped at our borders and they may carry out similar acts any moment,” Falahatpisheh told reporters on Sunday on the sidelines of a Commission meeting on the recent suicide bombing.
Also, according to Tasnim News Agency, the senior legislator added that the terror attack on the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) was the result of a spying operations, and said, “Those who carried out the suicide attack used infiltration.”
Dozens of IRGC members were killed or wounded after their bus came under a terrorist attack in Iran’s Southeastern Sistan and Balouchestan province on Wednesday evening.
The bus was carrying IRGC personnel on a road from the city of Khash to the provincial capital of Zahedan when a truck loaded with explosives and moving alongside the bus detonated.
A statement released by the Quds Base of the IRGC’s Ground Force said the bus was carrying a group of IRGC personnel “coming back from a border guarding mission when it came under a suicide car attack by Takfiri terrorists”, but did not mention the number of passengers.
“27 IRGC members have been martyred and 13 others wounded in the terrorist attack so far,” the statement said, and further blamed “the intelligence services of hegemonic system – a phrase used normally to refer to the United States and its allies – and Zionism for supporting the attack”.
The US officials have repeatedly stressed that they would take every possible measure to pressure Tehran, including support for groups operating against Iran. The incident came hours before the start of a US-sponsored security conference against Iran in Warsaw, Poland.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News last month that Washington would jointly host a global summit focused on Iran and the Middle East in Poland in February, but senior US diplomats later softened tone to shift the conference title to security in the Middle-East, denying that Iran will top or be the main agenda. The gathering took place in Warsaw from February 13 to 14, the US State Department said in a statement.
Meantime, Jeish Al-Adl, a Pakistan-based radical Wahhabi terrorist group staging cross border attacks into Southeastern Iran from South-West Pakistan, has claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement.
The group has bases in Southwestern Pakistan and started operations nearly 6 years ago after recruiting the remnants of Jundullah notorious terrorist group and reorganizing them. Iran had captured leaders of Jundullah notorious Wahhabi terrorist group and dismantled the terrorist organization years earlier.
On Saturday, Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari warned Riyadh and Abu Dhabi of Iran’s revenge for the Wednesday terrorist attack which killed dozens of the IRGC personnel, and blasted Pakistan for supporting the terrorist groups which act against Tehran.
“The traitor governments of Saudi Arabia and the UAE should know that the Islamic Republic of Iran’s patience has run out and the Islamic Republic will not tolerate your secret supports for the Takfiri grouplets. We will take revenge for our martyrs from the UAE and Saudi governments and want the president to give us more free hands than the past for retaliatory operations,” General Jafari said in the Central city of Isfahan, addressing the burial ceremony of the IRGC personnel killed in the Wednesday terrorist attack.
He said that the Saudi and UAE intelligence agencies are clearly hatching different plots to foment insecurity in Southeastern Iran in addition to the US and Israeli plots to create insecurity and conduct assassination operations, noting that Iran has reliable intel in this regard.
General Jafari also asked the Pakistani army and intelligence body why their country is sheltering Takfiri groups, including Jeish al-Adl which has claimed responsibility for the Wednesday terrorist attack, and noted, “We believe this silence is kind of support for this grouplet and the Pakistani intelligence organization should account for it.”
“Pakistan should also know that it should pay the cost for the Pakistani intelligence organization’s support for Jeish al-Zolm (as Jeish al-Adl is called in Iran) from now on and this price will not doubt be very heavy for them,” he added.
“Undoubtedly, the Pakistani security organization knows the hideout of the grouplets but it has kept mum,” General Jafari said.
Also on Saturday, General Jafari had also underlined harsh revenge from the culprits and masterminds of the Wednesday terrorist attack against the IRGC personnel, warning that Iran would act against the terrorists itself if Pakistan does not tighten security at the borders.
“The recent crime has caused the IRGC and other Armed Forces to boost determination to continue the path of martyrs and confront threats and they will protect security of the country’s borders with more strength and power and will take revenge of the blood of our oppressed martyrs,” General Jafari said, addressing a ceremony in Isfahan on Saturday.
He said that Pakistan which is aware of the hideouts of the terrorists who conducted the Wednesday suicide attack against the IRGC should account for their crimes too and act upon its responsibilities to establish security at common borders and should not allow the terrorists to use its bordering areas to carry out acts against the Iranian nation’s security.
“If Pakistan does not comply with its responsibilities, the Islamic Republic of Iran reserves the right of confrontation against these peripheral threats at the borders with the neighboring country, based on international law and rules, and will adopt compensatory measures to punish the terrorists who are mercenaries of the regional and trans-regional states’ spy agencies,” General Jafari warned.
In mid October, Jeish al-Adl had abducted 14 Iranian Basijis (volunteer forces) and border guards at Mirjaveh border in Southeastern Sistan-Balouchestan province. Five were released a month later on November 15.
The IRGC Ground Force then blamed foreign intelligence services for supporting and assisting the terrorist group.
Jeish al-Adl also abducted five Iranian border guards in Jakigour region of Sistan and Balouchestan Province and took them to Pakistan in 2014. After two months of abduction, four of them were released and the fifth one was killed. His body was returned to Iran months later.
Then early in March, 2015, Pakistani sources told the country’s media that authorities in Southwestern Pakistan had arrested the ringleader of Jeish al-Adl terrorist group as he was traveling on a bus from the lawless border area.
Salam Rigi, cousin of the Jundollah terrorist group’s ringleader Abdolmalek Rigi, was seized by Pakistani authorities who were tipped off to his movements and intercepted the bus some 50 km from Quetta, the capital of Pakistan’s Baluchistan, a security official said on the condition of anonymity.
Salam Rigi was accused of involvement in suicide bombings in Iran and Pakistan, as well as sending terrorists to the conflicts in Iraq and Syria.
Other sources said the terrorist arrested was Abdo-Sattar Rigi (Abdolmalek’s brother), explaining that he was carrying his cousin’s ID card at the time of arrest, but further investigations revealed his true identity.
Later reports proved that the captured terrorist was Abdo-Sattar Rigi.
Abdo-Sattar (the third of the notorious Rigi brothers) headed the Jeish al-Nasr terrorist group, but his cousin Salam leads Jeish al-Adl.
Abdo-Sattar’s two older brothers, Abdolmalek and Abdolhamid Rigi, who led the more powerful terrorist group, Jundollah, were both captured and condemned to death by Iran earlier.
In early 2009, Abdolhamid Rigi, the Jundullah terrorist group’s number two man and brother of its ringleader Abdolmalek Rigi, was arrested by Iranian security forces.
Abdolhamid had conducted a number of bombing operations and other violent attacks in Iran resulting in many casualties and was sentenced to death by the court in 2009, but his execution was delayed on several occasions. Officials did not mention any specific reason for the delayed execution of Abdolhamid at the time.
Iran arrested Abdolmalek Rigi, the number one man of the Jundollah terrorist group in late February 2011. Abdolmalek was executed in June 2011.
Iranian military and police officials voice concern over the presence of terrorist groups in Pakistan’s territories, criticizing the Pakistani army and border police’s lax control over shared borders.
The two sides’ state and military officials have exchanged frequent visits to enhance anti-terrorism cooperation specially in border regions. In early December, top security officials from Iran and Pakistan met in Iran’s Southeastern city of Zahedan to hold the 22nd joint meeting on border cooperation between the two countries.
Late in October, Commander of the IRGC Ground Force Brigadier General Mohammad Pakpour announced his forces’ preparedness to launch joint operations against the terrorists who abducted the Iranian border guards in Southeastern Iran.
“We have had different contacts with the Pakistani army and urged them to guarantee extradition of the outlaws and healthiness of the abductees and they should show more responsibility,” General Pakpour said, referring to the fate of the 9 border guards that are still kept by Jeish Al-Adl.
“These terrorists have a stronghold and a base on Pakistan’s soil and we are prepared for any joint operations with the Pakistani army against the outlaws to release the hostages,” he added.