Iran Parliament, shrine attacked by bombers; gunmen, 12 killed

IS claims responsibility, Sushma condemns act
Report by: 
Agencies
Tehran
7 Jun 2017

Gunmen and suicide bombers attacked Iran's parliament and the shrine of its revolutionary leader today, killing at least 12 people, wounding dozens and igniting hours-long siege at the legislature that ended with four attackers dead.

The Islamic State group claimed the attacks, marking the first time the Sunni extremists have taken responsibility for an assault in Shiite-majority Iran. The militants are at war with Iranian-backed forces in Syria and Iraq, and view Shiites as apostates. The attacks began midmorning when assailants armed with Kalashnikov rifles stormed the parliament building. One of the attackers later blew himself up inside, where a session had been in progress, according to a statement carried by Iran's state TV.

Deputy Interior Minister Mohammad Hossein Zolfaghari told Iran's state TV the apparently male attackers wore women's attire. The semi-official Tasnim news agency later reported the siege had ended with four of the attackers killed. Mizan Online, an Iranian state-run news website, said 12 people were killed and 42 wounded in the two attacks. It quoted Pirhossein Kolivand, the head of Iran's emergency department. Meanwhile, external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj today spoke to Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif and condemned the terrorist attacks on institution of democracy and spirituality in Tehran.

External affairs ministry said that in a pre-scheduled telephone conversation, the minister offered sincere condolences on loss of innocent lives and expressed solidarity with the people and the government of Iran.