Iran’s leader has lashed out at former US president Donald Trump and others for the killing of Qasem Soleimani, saying they “will pay back for their crime.”
Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei insisted that the IRGC general will remain in history as a martyr whereas his killers will be forgotten.
During a meeting with Soleimani’s family and close collaborators on the second anniversary of his death Khamenei described him as a martyr and symbol of “resistance” in the region, stressing, “Martyr Soleimani is more dangerous to his enemies than Commander Soleimani”.
“Resistance” or “Resistance front” is a term used by the Islamic Republic to refer to its anti-Western allies and proxies throughout the region, from Hezbollah in Lebanon to Houthis in Yemen, the Syrian president Bashar al-Assad and Iraqi Shiite militias.
Officials and members of Soleimani's family meeting Khamenei on Saturday.
Khamenei said, “Trump and others like him will be forgotten and lost in the dustbin of history, of course after paying for their crimes in the world.”
As the country is getting ready to hold ceremonies for the second anniversary of Soleimani’s killing threats and rhetoric by Iranian officials have increased. Iran is planning a long list of events lasting ten days to mark Soleimani’s “martyrdom”. He was killed by a US drone strike on January 3, 2020, as he arrived in Baghdad.
He was Iran’s top military and intelligence operator in the Middle East, organizing proxy forces.
Soleimani played a major role in the Syrian civil war as the coordinator of Iran’s military involvement, including sending tens of thousands of regular and irregular forces to fight in support of Assad.
Iranian officials have often threatened retribution against American and Israeli officials that they have listed as having been involved in ordering, planning and carrying out the drome strike that killed Soleimani. Shortly after his death, Khamenei in January 2020 had said that those responsible for ordering and carrying out the killing had to pay for their actions.
Soleimani’s successor as commander of the extra-territorial Qods (Quds) force, Esmail Ghaani (Qaani) and other officials have also called for retribution against Trump and others.
Iran’s hardline leader said that two years after Soleimani’s death Iran’s proxies are now in a stronger position and more infused with hope.