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Iran Guards chief threatens US,Britain after attack - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards Mohammad Ali Jafari pauses while speaking with the local media in Tehran July 25, 2009 (REUTERS)

Head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Mohammad Ali Jafari pauses while speaking with the local media in Tehran July 25, 2009 (REUTERS)

TEHRAN, (Reuters) – The head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said on Monday that a Sunni rebel group blamed for an attack on the force had ties with U.S., British and Pakistani intelligence, a news agency said.

“Behind this scene are the American and British intelligence apparatus, and there will have to be retaliatory measures to punish them,” Guards commander-in-chief Mohammad Ali Jafari said, according to the ISNA news agency.

Iranian media say the Sunni insurgent group Jundollah (God’s soldiers) has claimed responsibility for Sunday’s suicide bombing in Sistan-Baluchestan province, which killed 42 people including several senior Guards commanders.

Jafari said Iranian security officials had presented documents on Monday indicating “direct ties” from Jundollah to U.S., British and, “unfortunately”, Pakistani intelligence organisations.

Jundollah, which has been blamed for many attacks in the southeasterly province in recent years, says it is fighting for the rights of the Sunni Muslim minority in predominantly Shi’ite Iran. Its leader is Abdolmalek Rigi.

“And this person himself and his plans are undoubtedly under the umbrella and the protection of these (U.S., British and Pakistani) organisations,” Jafari said.

A senior judiciary official in Sistan-Baluchestan, Ebrahim Hamidi, said Jundollah members were at war with God and faced execution, the semi-official Fars News Agency reported. “The verdict and punishment of being at war with God is execution,” he said. Iran hanged 13 alleged Jundollah members last July.

An image grab taken from Iran's official Arabic-language Al-Alam TV shows Iranian General Nur-Ali Shushtari, deputy commander of the Revolutionary Guards ground forces, October 18, 2009, just before he was killed (AFP)

An image grab taken from Iran’s official Arabic-language Al-Alam TV shows Iranian General Nur-Ali Shushtari, deputy commander of the Revolutionary Guards ground forces, October 18, 2009, just before he was killed (AFP)

An image grab taken from Iran's official Arabic-language Al-Alam TV shows a general view of a meeting of the elite Revolutionary Guards before a suicide attack at the site on October 18, 2009 (AFP)

An image grab taken from Iran’s official Arabic-language Al-Alam TV shows a general view of a meeting of the elite Revolutionary Guards before a suicide attack at the site on October 18, 2009 (AFP)

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

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