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Iran's deadly blasts involve 'suicide attack'

Xinhua | Updated: 2024-01-05 09:33
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People gather at the scene of explosions during a ceremony held to mark the death of late Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, in Kerman, Iran, Jan 3, 2024. [Photo/Agencies]

TEHRAN - The first explosion of a twin bombing near the tomb of a top Iranian general in Kerman, southeastern Iran, was a "suicide attack", Iran's official news agency IRNA reported Thursday, citing an informed source.

According to IRNA, the source said surveillance camera footage and other evidence around the first blast pointed to a suicidal attack.

Its perpetrator, a suicide bomber, was completely dismembered in the explosion, and probes were ongoing to identify the person, the source told IRNA.

The source added that the nature of the second explosion was also under investigation but "most probably" also a suicide attack.

IRNA said the first blast was about 700 meters from Soleimani's tomb and the second was a kilometer away. Rahman Jalali, the deputy governor of Kerman province for political and security affairs, said the explosions were carried out by "terrorists", it reported.

At least 84 people were killed and 284 others injured in the bombings in Kerman on Wednesday, said Iran's interior minister on Thursday.

The Iranian government has declared Thursday a day of national mourning.

Soleimani, one of the most powerful military commanders in Iran, was killed on Jan 3, 2020, near Baghdad's international airport in a drone strike ordered by then-US President Donald Trump.

He was buried in his hometown of Kerman after a funeral that drew millions of mourners across Iran. Iran denounced the assassination as "state terrorism" and vowed revenge.

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