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Zarif says retaliation for Soleimani killing still to come

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohmmad Javad Zarif described the former IRGC commander as a "hero for the region" as Iranian leaders make vague threats of retaliation.
TOPSHOT - An Iranian, wearing a t-shirt with a picture of slain commander Qasem Soleimani, takes part in a demonstration in the capital Tehran on January 3, 2020 against the killing of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards top commander in a US strike in Baghdad. - Iran warned of "severe revenge" and said arch-enemy the United States bore responsiblity for the consequences after killing one of its top commanders, Qasem Soleimani, in a strike  outside Baghdad airport. (Photo by ATTA KENARE / AFP) (Photo by ATTA K

“President [Donald] Trump ordered the assassination of a national hero for Iran and a hero for the region,” said Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif of the killing of powerful Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani in a US drone strike back in January. The attack on Soleimani’s convoy outside Baghdad’s International Airport also left several others dead, including pro-Iran Shiite commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis. 

Addressing a virtual meeting of the US-based think tank Council on Foreign Relations, Zarif called the killing “a great mistake” by the United States, adding that “the book” on Iran’s retaliatory measures “is not closed.” However, he noted, “I’m not in the business of making threats,” suggesting that any decisions about retaliation lie with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who is constitutionally the commander-in-chief and holds the ultimate authority over all sensitive foreign policy matters.

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