Iran’s IRGC intelligence says it foiled plot to kill Quds Forces chief Soleimani
Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) intelligence service has foiled an assassination attempt on Qassem Soleimani, one of its senior commanders, the semi-official Fars news agency reported on Thursday.
Soleimani is the commander of the IRGC’s Quds Force (IRGC-QF), responsible for promoting Iranian influence and carrying out attacks abroad. Soleimani has the rank of Major General in the IRGC.
The apparent plot against him was revealed by the head of the IRGC Intelligence Organization, Hossein Taeb, who claimed the plot was designed by “Israeli-Arab” intelligence services. The IRGC Intelligence Organisation is independent from and operates parallel to Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence.
The plan was to assassinate Soleimani in a Shiite congregation hall during the Islamic month of Muharram in Iran’s south-eastern Kerman province, in an attempt to start a sectarian war in the country, claimed Taeb.
All members of the assassination team have been arrested, he added.
The plan to assassinate Soleimani had been in the making for “several years,” according to Taeb.
Taeb gave no further information at the time of writing.
The IRGC-QF was recently accused of plotting to attack Israel from Syria, where the IRGC-QF has been fighting alongside the regime of Bashar al-Assad and the Iran-backed terrorist organization Hezbollah.
Tehran has been accused of carrying out assassinations of its political enemies and dissidents itself. On Tuesday, Saudi Arabia’s Council of Ministers said that the Iranian regime has known “nothing but bombing, destruction and assassination” for 40 years.