Mahmud Absalan, the bodyguard killed in attack on Gen. Almassi's car. Undated

Mahmud Absalan, the bodyguard killed in attack on Gen. Almassi's car.

Gunmen Fire At IRGC General's Car, Killing Bodyguard

4/23/2022

Gunmen opened fire on a car carrying a senior Revolutionary Guard commander in Iran’s restive southeastern region early on Saturday, killing a bodyguard, Iranian state media reported.

Brigadier General Hossein Almassi, the commander of IRGC’ Brigade 100 in Sistan-Baluchistan province, was unhurt after the attack and the attackers were arrested according to authorities.

However, the Baluch Activists’ Campaign, a dissident group, claimed Almassi was wounded and taken to Zahedan’s Nabi Akram hospital. The group said his condition is critical.

Mahmoud Absalan, the bodyguard who was killed in the attack that occurred near a checkpoint near the provincial capital Zahedan, was the son of Almassi’s deputy. The attackers fired from a vehicle.

Brig. Gen. Hossein Almassi.

Brigade 110 known as the Salman Farsi brigade during the Iran-Iraq war in 1980s was under the command of Qasem Soleimani, who later headed IRGC’s notorious Qods (Quds) Force and was killed in a targeted US air strike in Baghdad in January 2020.

The attack came on a night celebrated by many Shiite Iranians as the holiest, which this year coincided with events marking the anniversary of the Revolutionary Guards' establishment after the 1979 Islamic revolution.

The predominantly Sunni Muslim Sistan-Baluchistan province near the Pakistani and Afghan borders has long been plagued by unrest from both drug smuggling gangs and Sunni Islamist militants fighting the country's Shi’ite authorities.

Many of Iran's Sunnis complain of discrimination, a charge denied by the state.

In 2009, a suicide bomber killed six senior Revolutionary Guards commanders and more than 29 other people in Sistan-Baluchistan, in one of the boldest attacks on Iran's most powerful military institution.

With reporting by Reuters

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