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Friday, May 24, 2024

Islamabad threatens Tehran with ‘serious consequences’

Iran has reportedly launched a strike on the Pakistani-based group Jaish al-Adl

The Pakistani government has condemned an alleged Iranian missile strike in the Balochistan province on Tuesday, claiming it caused civilian casualties. Islamabad has said it would lodge a protest with Tehran over the “unilateral action” and violation of its sovereignty.

Several Iranian news outlets reported on Tuesday evening that missiles and drones were launched at the headquarters of Jaish al-Adl, a group that Tehran has accused of the attack that killed a dozen Iranian police in December. There was no official statement on the operation from Iran, however.

Read more: Pakistan says Iran violated airspace, killing two children

“Pakistan strongly condemns the unprovoked violation of its airspace by Iran and the strike inside Pakistani territory which resulted in the death of two innocent children while injuring three girls,” the Foreign Ministry in Islamabad said in a statement, adding that the violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty was “completely unacceptable and can have serious consequences.”

Terrorism is a threat to all countries in the region and requires “coordinated” action rather than unilateral moves that are “not in conformity with good neighborly relations and can seriously undermine bilateral trust,” the ministry added.

The Iranian charge d’affaires has been summoned to receive a protest note about the “blatant violation” of Pakistani sovereignty, while an appropriate demarche was sent to Tehran as well, the Pakistani Foreign Ministry said.

Read more: Iran fires missiles at ‘terrorists and spies’ near US consulate

A series of explosions were reported on Tuesday night in Panjgur, a city in the Pakistani province of Balochistan near the border between the two countries. According to Iranian media, “two key strongholds” of Jaish al-Adl were “obliterated by precision strikes” by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

On Monday, the IRGC launched ballistic missiles and drones against what they described as an Israeli headquarters in the northern Iraqi city of Erbil, as well as Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) targets in Syria’s Idlib province.

The IRGC vowed to continue the strikes “until the last drops of martyrs’ blood are avenged,” referring to the January 3 bombings that killed almost 100 people in the Iranian city of Kerman, where thousands of pilgrims had gathered to mourn the late General Qassem Soleimani, assassinated by the US in 2020. The group also mentioned last month’s attack in Rask in southeastern Iran, in which militants killed 11 Iranian police officers.