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IRGC member killed in attack on Basij base in southeast Iran

A member of Iran’s elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps was killed and five were wounded in an armed attack on a base in the restive southeast on Saturday, February 2, the official IRNA news agency reported.

The attack took place in Sistan and Baluchistan province, long a flashpoint, where Pakistan-based Baluchi separatists and jihadists carry out cross-border raids.

The province has a large, mainly Sunni Muslim ethnic Baluchi community which straddles the border.

The assailants struck a base of the paramilitary Basij militia in the town of Nikshahr, some way from the border, IRNA said.

“Morteza Ali-Mohammadi was martyred in the incident and the five critically injured have been transferred to the hospital,” Nikshahr’s prosecutor Mohsen Golmohammadi told the semi-official YJC news agency.

Iran on Friday began ten days of celebrations to mark the 1979 Islamic Revolution which deposed the monarch Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, replacing his government with an Islamic republic under the Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

State media said only that it was a “terrorist” attack, and held no particular group responsible.

Jaish al-Adl (Army of Justice), which is blacklisted as a terrorist group by Iran, claimed responsibility for the raid on social media.

Founded by members of the Sunni jihadist group Jundallah, Jaish al-Adl is an insurgent group that has targeted Iranian security personnel throughout the province in recent years.

It also claimed responsibility for two bombings on earlier this week which wounded several police officers in the provincial capital Zahedan.

In October, 12 Iranian security personnel were abducted in Sistan and Balochistan on the volatile border with Pakistan.  Five of the security personnel, which included border guards, militamen and IRGC members, were freed in November after Pakistan secured their release. The kidnapping was claimed by Jaish al-Adl.

With reporting from AFP

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