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Gunmen attack Iran military parade, killing at least 24

Gunmen attack Iran military parade, killing at least 24”

At least 25 people were killed and 60 others injured in the terrorist attack on a military parade in Ahvaz, Khuzestan Province, on Saturday.

Pointing to the media war against Iran claiming that Iran trains and funds terrorists, Shekarchi said today's terrorist attack and the brutal massacure of innocent people, children, disabled war veterans and soldiers prove that the Islamic Republic of Iran itself is the victim of terrorism.

Gunmen disguised as soldiers in military uniforms, began shooting from behind the stands during the parade, according to the state-run news agency.

The British charge d'affaires, along with the Dutch and Danish ambassadors, were "informed of Iran's strong protests over their respective countries' hosting of some members of the terrorist group" which carried out the attack, the official news agency Irna said.

"John Bolton, the national security adviser, penned a memo last August in which he specifically said the US should be providing assistance to the Khuzestan Arabs, the group that this entity claims to represent, the entity that perpetrated this terrorist attack", Parsi told CNN.

The parade was part of nationwide ceremonies held to mark the 30th anniversary of the ending of the eight-year war with Iraq in August 1988.

President Hassan Rouhani said Iran was ready to confront the U.S. and its Gulf Arab allies over the attack.

Zarif vowed Iran would "respond swiftly and decisively in defence of Iranian lives".

"The formal incitement against the UAE from within Iran is unfortunate, and has escalated after the Ahvaz attack", UAE's Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said in a tweet.

The Islamic State extremist group and an anti-government umbrella group, Ahvaz National Resistance, both claimed responsibility for the attack.

The al-Ahwaziya terror group, whose recruits are believed to be scattered in several European countries, including in the Netherlands and Denmark, claimed responsibility for the attack.

State television immediately described the assailants as 'takfiri gunmen, ' a term previously used to describe the Islamic State group, in which Iran is deeply involved in the fight against.

The SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors jihadist websites, reported that IS said the attack was in response to Iranian involvement in conflicts across the region. It was the deadliest such attack in Iran in almost a decade.

Zarif said that children and journalists were casualties in the attack.

Police said that five people were arrested at the scene of the attacks and dozens more arrests were reported in the following months - many along the borders with Iraq and Turkey.

Iran is at odds with Western-allied Saudi Arabia for predominance in the Middle East.

Iran has ballistic missiles with a range of up to 3,500 kilometres, enough to reach both Israel and United States bases in the Middle East. Tehran says the groups are financed by Saudi Arabia, Iran's Sunni rival in the region.

Khamenei ordered security forces to bring to justice those responsible for one of the worst assaults ever against the Revolutionary Guards, the most powerful military force in the country, which answers to him.

The decades-old feud between them is exacerbated by religious differences - Iran is largely Shia Muslim, while Saudi Arabia sees itself as the leading Sunni Muslim power.

IS has carried out a major attack in Iran before. It also has steadily ramped up pressure on Iran to try to get it to stop what Washington calls its "malign activities" in the region.

The city was also one of the few venues of anti-government protests late a year ago.



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