Iran attacks live: Parliament siege over, IS claims suicide attacks, at least 12 dead
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Tehran/New Delhi: Islamic State (IS) on Wednesday claimed coordinated suicide attacks, at least two, on Iran’s parliament, known as Majlis, and the tomb of Islamic revolutionary founder Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini on Wednesday, with up to seven people killed and several others injured.
Initially, it was not clear who was behind the attacks, but the IS claimed the responsibility for the attacks via its news portal AMAQ. Iran is a key player in the fight against the Islamic State group in both Syria and Iraq.
Parliament or Majlis was in session as the attacks unfolded, with live footage showing members continuing with routine business even as gun battles were reported in surrounding office buildings.
Here are the latest updates and developments:
■ Russian president Vladimir Putin has offered his condolences after twin attacks on Iran’s parliament and a shrine to its revolutionary leader, vowing aid in the fight against international terrorism.
In a message released by the Kremlin after Wednesday’s attacks, Putin said Russia “resolutely condemns” the violence.
Putin said the attacks underscore the need for deeper international cooperation to fight terrorism and confirmed Moscow’s willingness to aid Iran. (AP)
■ France’s foreign ministry on Wednesday strongly condemned an attack claimed by Islamic State militants that killed at least 12 people in the Iranian capital Tehran.
“We strongly condemn the attacks that targeted the Iranian parliament and the Imam Khomenei mausoleum in Tehran,” the foreign ministry said in a statement. (Reuters)
■ About five hours after the first reports, Iranian news agencies said four people who had attacked parliament were dead and the incident was over. At least 12 people were killed by the attackers, the head of Iran’s emergency department, Pir-Hossein Kolivand, was quoted as saying by state broadcaster IRIB. (Reuters)
■ Iranian media says parliament siege over, 4 attackers killed. (AP)
■ The Kremlin on Wednesday condemned gun and suicide bomb attacks in Tehran claimed by the Islamic State and called for greater coordination in the fight against the group.
“Moscow decisively condemns such terrorist attacks,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, adding that “the continuation of a series of terror attacks again underlines the need for coordinated actions in the fight against terror and IS.” (AFP)
■ Islamic State’s news agency Amaq published a video on Wednesday showing a gunman at the Iranian parliament where an attack has been taking place.
Another attacker was heard on the video saying: “Thank God ... Do you think we will go away?” (Reuters)
■ Iran’s deputy interior minister says attackers dressed as women entered the parliament from main gate – Tasnim. (Reuters)
— Iran’s deputy interior minister said one of the attackers was shot dead in the parliament; one detonated a suicide vest – Tasnim news agency. (Reuters)
— Iran’s deputy interior minister says attackers are now surrounded in the parliament building – Tasnim. (Reuters)
■ The Iranian Intelligence Ministry said security forces had arrested a “terrorist team” planning a third attack, without giving further details. Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attacks in a statement. If confirmed, they would be the first assaults by the hardline Sunni Muslim group inside the Shi’ite Muslim country. (Reuters)
■ Islamic State (IS) claimed responsibility for attacks on Iran’s parliament and Ayatollah Khomeini’s shrine on Wednesday, the group’s state news agency AMAQ said. “Fighters from Islamic state attacked Khomeini’s shrine and the Iranian parliament in Tehran,” the agency said. (Reuters)
■ Iran state TV: Attacker blows himself up during assault on Iran’s parliament building. (AP)
■ One attacker detonated a suicide vest at the mausoleum of Ayatollah Khomeini in southern Tehran, one was killed by the security forces and the rest of the assailants were arrested, the Governor of Tehran was quoted as saying by state broadcaster IRIB. Hossein Hashemi said a worker was killed in the attack at the mausoleum and several others were injured. (Reuters)
■ One of the attackers on Iran’s parliament complex blew himself up on the fourth floor amid an ongoing siege, state broadcaster IRIB reported on Wednesday.
Four armed assailants attacked the parliament office buildings in central Tehran mid-morning, while others attacked the shrine of revolutionary founder Ruhollah Khomeini in the south of the city, where a female suicide bomber blew herself up. (AFP)
■ Iran’s intelligence ministry says twin attacks in Tehran carried out by terrorist groups: State TV. (Reuters)
Earlier, Reuters quoting Tasmin news agency reported that simultaneous assaults killed up to seven people. There were unconfirmed reports that the attackers had taken four hostages inside the parliament building.
Three assailants, one with a pistol and two with AK-47 assault rifles, carried out the attack in central Tehran, lawmaker Elias Hazrati told state television, Reuters reported.
■ Conditions in parliament under control. Iran’s interior minister Rahmani Fazli issues an order to hold an extraordinary security session in Tehran to investigate the shooting incidents at the Parliament and the Mausoleum of Imam Khomeini: Mehr News Agency. (HT)
■ Suicide bomber in Imam Khomeini shrine was reportedly a woman. She blew up herself outside shrine on western yard, says Mehr News Agency. (HT)
■ Four attackers in parliament shooting, 8 people wounded. (AP)
■ A suicide bomber detonated explosives at the tomb of Iranian revolutionary founder Ruhollah Khomeini in southern Tehran today, news agency ISNA reported. The agency reported one person killed but it was unclear if that meant the suicide bomber. The ILNA news agency said five people had been injured by shooting at the mausoleum. (AFP)