Israel Kills Senior IRGC Officer in Syria – Iran Threatens Retaliation

Damascus/Tehran, December 25, 2023 – Tensions in the Middle East sharply escalated following an Israeli airstrike near Damascus that killed Sayyed Razi Mousavi, a high-ranking member of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). The incident, occurring amid ongoing hostilities between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, provoked stern responses from Iranian authorities and warnings of severe retaliation.

Sayyed Razi Mousavi, identified as one of the top commanders of the IRGC in Syria, was reported killed in the Zeinab suburb of Damascus. Mousavi was a key figure in IRGC operations in Syria, closely associated with the late Quds Force commander Qasem Soleimani. The IRGC, through the Tasnim News Agency, confirmed his death, noting that Mousavi’s loss comes just days before the fourth anniversary of Soleimani’s assassination. The IRGC stated that their response to this incident would be decisive.

While Israel has not officially taken responsibility for the strike, an Israeli official stated that Mousavi was responsible for overseeing Iran-supported militias in Syria and their connections with Hezbollah in Lebanon. Israel is reportedly preparing for potential retaliation, including possible rocket launches from Syria and Lebanon.

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi condemned the assassination, warning Israel that it would “surely pay” for its actions, which he portrayed as a sign of Israel’s weakness in the region. Officials of the Iranian government threaten significant retaliation against Israel.

This latest development in Syria, combined with the ongoing conflict in Gaza, indicates a deeper crisis in the region, with potential implications for broader regional stability.

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