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  • People attend a funeral procession of Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad, Iraq, 04 January 2020.

    People attend a funeral procession of Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad, Iraq, 04 January 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 4 January 2020

The Trump-ordered murder of Iranian General Soleimani increased the risk of military conflicts in the Strait of Hormuz, the Oman Sea, and the Persian Gulf.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard commander Gholamali Abuhamzeh Friday warned that his country will punish the United States anywhere within the reach of the Islamic Republic in retaliation for the murder of General Qassem Soleimani.

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Abuhamzeh, who stressed that Tehran has identified vital U.S. goals in the Middle East for a long time, mentioned a series of possible targets for reprisals including the Gulf waterway through which a significant proportion of shipborne oil is exported to global markets.

"About 35 U.S. targets in the region are within our reach and Tel Aviv, which is the heart and life of the United States, is also within reach," he said.

"The Strait of Hormuz is a vital point for the West. A large number of U.S. destroyers and warships crosses the Strait of Hormuz, the Oman Sea, and the Persian Gulf." 

General Soleimani was attacked and assassinated on January 2 when vehicles carrying him and other Kataib Hezbollah militia high-ranking officers ​​​were leaving Baghdad airport. The attack was ordered by U.S. President Donald Trump.

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani promised that his country and other nations in the region "will avenge the martyrdom of Soleimani."

Supreme religious leader Ayatollah Ali Hosseini Khamenei​​​​​​​ also affirmed that the criminals who killed the Iranian general await hard revenge.

After announcing three days of national mourning for the death of Soleimani, Khamenei appointed Brigadier General Esmail Ghaani as the new commander of the Quds Force.

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif described the U.S. attack as an "act of international terrorism," warning that such an "extremely dangerous" action will have its consequences for the U.S.​

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