Iranians taking part in a funeral procession for victims of Ahvaz terror attack

Iranians taking part in a funeral procession for victims of Ahvaz terror attack

Masses of Iranian people and government officials are taking part in a funeral procession for the victims of Saturday's terrorist attack in Iran's southwestern city of Ahvaz.

The funeral procession began in Ahvaz on Monday, two days after terrorists opened fire at the crowd of people during a military parade in the southwestern city, killing 25 military personnel and civilians — including women and children — and wounding at least 68 others.

Among the government officials attending the funeral are two representatives of Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei; Iranian Defense Minister Amir Hatami; Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi; Health Minister Hassan Ghazizadeh Hashemi; Deputy Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Brigadier General Hossein Salami, and others.

Monday has been declared a day of public mourning in Khuzestan Province, and the victims will be buried following the funeral procession.

Earlier, the two representatives of the Leader visited the wounded victims at local hospitals and followed up on their medical treatment.

The "al-Ahwaziya" terrorist group, which receives backing mainly from Saudi Arabia, claimed responsibility for the attack shortly after it was carried out.

Also the terrorist group of Daesh claimed responsibility, publishing online purported footage of the assailants.

Three of the four assailants involved in the attack were killed by Iranian security forces, and a fourth one was arrested but later died of the wounds he had sustained during a security chase.

Iran summoned the ambassadors of the Netherlands and Denmark as well as the chargé d'affaires of Britain over sheltering members of "al-Ahwaziya."

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif confirmed on the day of the attack that the terrorists had been "recruited, trained, armed & paid by a foreign regime" and said a response would be coming "swiftly and decisively."

President Hassan Rouhani later said a "crushing" response awaited those responsible for the attack.

And Ayatollah Khamenei tasked Iran's intelligence services with prompt work to identify the perpetrators and hand them over to the Iranian Judiciary.

Delivering a speech at the Monday funeral procession, Intelligence Minister Alavi said that a large number of terrorists linked to the attack had been arrested.

He delivered a stern warning.

"Let those who committed this horrendous crime know: the sons of Islamic Iran will not be silent in the face of these criminal acts," Alavi said. "The crime of killing six-year-old children, [and] the crime of shooting at... women and children is nothing that... Iran's security, military, and intelligence apparatuses would let go [unpunished]."

He confirmed that those terrorists involved in the attack had all been killed and that their enablers "will be identified to the last person."

"Security and judicial forces will do justice to each and every one of the terrorists, and will send the message to the world that... Iran is not the place for such [terrorist] activities."

Deputy Commander of the IRGC Brig. Gen. Hossein Salami said in a speech of his own at the funeral that Iran's response to the backers of the terrorist attack would be "crushing."

He said those who seek to "apply the Syria and Iraq model to Iran" would fail to accomplish their plot.

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