Euronews is no longer accessible on Internet Explorer. This browser is not updated by Microsoft and does not support the last technical evolutions. We encourage you to use another browser, such as Edge, Safari, Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.
BREAKING NEWS

Iran says it foiled plot to kill Quds chief Soleimani

Euronews logo
Text size Aa Aa

DUBAI (Reuters) – A senior Iranian official said on Thursday that Tehran had foiled a plot by Israeli and Arab agencies to assassinate Major-General Qassem Soleimani, head of the elite Quds Force.

State media quoted Hossein Taeb, the Revolutionary Guards security chief, as telling a conference that the plotters had planned to buy a property adjacent to the grave of Soleimani’s father and rig it with explosives to kill the commander.

Soleimani leads the foreign arm of the Guards and has had a key role in fighting in Syria and Iraq.

Taeb said an unspecified number of people had been arrested in the plot, which he said had been “years in planning”.

Taeb did not name the Arab countries allegedly involved in the plot, but Iran has had tense relations with U.S.-allied regional rival Saudi Arabia.

It was not possible to independently verify the events described by Iranian media.

Soleimani’s Quds Force, tasked with carrying out operations beyond Iran’s borders, has shored up support for Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad when he looked close to defeat in the civil war raging since 2011 and also helped militiamen defeat Islamic State in Iraq.

Its successes have made Soleimani instrumental in the steady spread of Iranian influence in the Middle East, which the United States and Tehran’s foes Saudi Arabia and Israel have struggled to keep in check.

There have been repeated air attacks on Quds bases in Syria and in August Israel accused the force of planning “killer drone attacks” and said its air strike showed Tehran that its forces were vulnerable anywhere.

Foreign Minister Israel Katz said at the time that Israel was working to “uproot” Soleimani, according to Israeli media.

(Reporting by Dubai newsroom; Editing by Giles Elgood)

euronews provides breaking news articles from reuters as a service to its readers, but does not edit the articles it publishes. Articles appear on euronews.com for a limited time.