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Reactions to the killing of Iranian general in a US air strike

Reuters January 3 | Updated on January 03, 2020 Published on January 03, 2020

Mike Pompeo, US Secretary of State. File photo   -  REUTERS

Here are some reactions to the killing of Iranian Major-General Qassem Soleimani, head of the elite Quds Force, in a US air strike on his convoy at Baghdad airport.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s Supreme Leader: “All enemies should know that the jihad of resistance will continue with a doubled motivation, and a definite victory awaits the fighters in the holy war,” Khamenei said in a statement carried by TV. Iran often refers to regional countries and forces opposed to Israel and the United States as a ”resistance” front.

Hassan Rouhani, Iranian President: “Soleimani's martyrdom will make Iran more decisive to resist America's expansionism and to defend our Islamic values,” Rouhani said in a statement. “With no doubt, Iran and other freedom-seeking countries in the region will take his revenge.”

US Senator Jim Risch, Chairman, Senate Foreign Relations Committee: “Qassem Soleimani was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Americans,” Risch, a Republican, said on Twitter. “As I have previously warned the Iranian government, they should not mistake our reasonable restraint in response to their previous attacks as weakness.”

“On behalf of every American serviceman and servicewoman who has either been killed or injured due to an Iranian-provided IED or rocket in Iraq over the years, today justice was done.”

Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iranian Foreign Minister: “The brutality and stupidity of American terrorist forces in assassinating Commander Soleimani...will undoubtedly make the tree of resistance in the region and the world more prosperous,” Zarif said in a statement. On Twitter he said the assassination of Soleimani was “an extremely dangerous and foolish escalation.” “The US bears responsibility for all consequences of its rogue adventurism,” he said in the post.

Mike Pompeo, US Secretary Of State: “Iraqis dancing in the street for freedom; thankful that General Soleimani is no more,” he wrote on Twitter

Joe Biden, Former US Vice President: “This is a hugely escalatory move in an already dangerous region... President Trump just tossed a stick of dynamite into a tinderbox, and he owes the American people an explanation of the strategy and plan to keep safe our troops and embassy personnel, our people and our interests, both here at home and abroad, and our partners throughout the region and beyond.”

US Senator Elizabeth Warren, US Democratic Presidential Contender: “Soleimani was a murderer, responsible for the deaths of thousands, including hundreds of Americans. But this reckless move escalates the situation with Iran and increases the likelihood of more deaths and new Middle East conflict. Our priority must be to avoid another costly war.”

US Senator Bernie Sanders, US Democratic Presidential Contender: Trump's dangerous escalation brings us closer to another disastrous war in the Middle East that could cost countless lives and trillions more dollars. Trump promised to end endless wars, but this action puts us on the path to another one.

Chris Murphy, US Senator: Murphy, a Democrat, said while Soleimani was “an enemy of the United States,” the killing could put more Americans at risk. “One reason we don't generally (assassinate) foreign political officials is the belief that such action will get more, not less, Americans killed,” Murphy said on Twitter. “That should be our real, pressing and grave worry tonight.”

Nikki Haley,former US Ambassador To UN: “Qassem Soleimani was an arch terrorist with American blood on his hands,” Haley said on Twitter. “His demise should be applauded by all who seek peace and justice. “Proud of President Trump for doing the strong and right thing.”

Mohsen Rezaei, Former Commander Of Iran's Revolutionary Guards: “He joined his martyred brothers, but we will take vigorous revenge on America,” Rezaei, who is now the secretary of a powerful state body, said in a post on Twitter.

Geng Shuang, China's foreign ministry spokesman: China urges the relevant sides, especially the United States, to remain calm and exercise restraint to avoid further escalating tensions, said at a regular press briefing in Beijing, adding that peace and stability in West Asia must be upheld.

Published on January 03, 2020
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