The evil, criminal enemies of the Iranian nation have once again created a tragedy and martyred a large number of our dear people in Kerman. This tragedy will be met with a strong response.Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said on Wednesday following two explosions that killed at least 84 people and wounded at least 284 others.
Why It Matters: Two explosions struck Kerman, a city located about 510 miles from Iran’s capital, Tehran. The explosions went off as thousands gathered to commemorate an Iranian general that the U.S. assassinated in a 2020 drone strike. Iranian officials have referred to the explosions as a terrorist attack, and on Thursday, “A purported claim of responsibility circulated online” attributing “the attack to the Islamic State group,” though this has not yet been verified (The Associated Press). The explosions – the deadliest attack to hit Iran in decades – add tension to the Middle East amidst the nearly three-month-old Israel-Hamas war.
One senior Biden administration official speaking to reporters on the condition of anonymity suggested an insurgent group bears responsibility for the two explosions. The official said, “Based on the [modus operandi] it does look like a terrorist attack and the type of thing we’ve seen ISIS [Islamic State of Iraq and Syria] do in the past. And as far as we’re aware that’s kind of, I think, our going assumption at the moment.”
Read More: Iran suspects suicide bombers launched attack killing 84 as purported Islamic State claim circulates (The Associated Press)
Iran says at least 84 were killed in blasts at a ceremony honoring slain general (The Associated Press)
by Emily Hooker, based in Texas