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Members of ISIS group planning ‘suicide attack’ at end of Ramzan, arrested: Iran

Members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps force (Photo: Reuters)

Iran announced on Saturday that it had apprehended members of the ISIL (ISIS) group who were allegedly plotting an attack at the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramzan, Al Jazeera reported.

The breakthrough came after a vigilant citizen in Mahdasht, located in the Alborz province, approximately 60km (37 miles) west of Tehran, alerted law enforcement, according to police spokesman Saeed Montazerolmahdi.

This tip-off led to the arrest of a “senior” ISIL figure named Mohammad “Ramesh” Zaker. Montazerolmahdi revealed that Zaker and two other ISIL operatives were taken into custody, while an additional eight individuals accompanying the alleged terrorists were also arrested, as reported by Al Jazeera.

The group was purportedly planning a suicide attack during Eid al-Fitr, the festival marking the end of Ramzan.

This development follows previous attacks attributed to ISIL in Iran, including twin bombings during a ceremony in Kerman in January, which claimed nearly 100 lives and left over 200 wounded.

The Islamic State in Khorasan Province (ISIS-K), the Afghanistan-based branch of ISIL, claimed responsibility for the Kerman assault. Iran responded by arresting 35 individuals linked to the attacks, including an ISIS-K commander.

In addition to the Kerman incident, ISIL has been implicated in other attacks on Iranian soil, such as assaults on a major Shia shrine in Shiraz. Notably, the group has targeted symbols of Iranian authority, including the parliament and the tomb of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in 2017, according to Al Jazeera.

Meanwhile, Iran faces heightened security challenges amidst escalating tensions in the region, exacerbated by Israel’s military actions in Gaza. Recently, armed militants from the Sunni separatist group Jaish al-Adl launched attacks on two bases of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) in the southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchestan.

This prompted funeral processions for slain IRGC members across various provinces, including Lorestan and Mazandaran.

Furthermore, Iran mourned the loss of Brigadier-General Mohammad Reza Zahedi, a senior IRGC commander killed in an Israeli airstrike on the Iranian consulate building in Damascus, Syria.

Speaking to a crowd in Tehran on Saturday, the chief of staff of the Iranian armed forces, Mohammad Bagheri, said “the criminal US and the cruel and child-killing Zionists must know that the life of the regime [Israel] is coming to an end, and there is not much left until its decay and destruction”.

“Air strikes on a consulate, as a protected mission under international accords, have no meaning but madness from the Zionist regime because it is harming and killing itself. If politicians in Israel had any credibility left, this move destroyed it,” he said, renewing Iran’s vow for revenge for its killed commanders, Al Jazeera reported.