TEHERAN – Iran says the US assassination of senior Iranian anti-terrorism commander Lt. Gen. Qassem Soleimani is a clear example of “state terrorism” and has warned the UN against any understatement of the atrocities.
Esmaeil Baghaei Hamaneh, Iran’s permanent ambassador to the UN office in Geneva, did so on Thursday ahead of the 47th session of the UN Human Rights Council.
He spoke last year about a report from Agnes Callamard, the UN’s special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, on the murder that was sufficient to qualify it as an “arbitrary homicide”.
According to Press TV, the Iranian diplomat described the term as a mere understatement of the terrorist crime, which does not portray the enormity of “unjust, illegal and barbaric murder”.
Callamard’s description should not lead to an underestimation of the severity of “this act of state terrorism”.
General Soleimani, the former commander of the Quds force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), was martyred with his companions in a US drone attack near Baghdad airport in January 2020. The attack came during an official visit by General Soleimanimani to the Iraqi capital.
The strike was ordered directly by former US President Donald Trump.
Among the other martyrs in the attack was senior Iraqi counter-terrorism commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.
Both commanders had gained great admiration both in their respective countries and throughout the region.
General Soleimani’s reputation has registered him as the regionâ€™s most determined and beloved anti-terrorism military official who led the regionâ€™s successful fight against the Daesh terrorist group.
Baghaei Hamaneh described General Soleimani as “a true defender of human rights and an opponent of the occupation and terrorism of Daesh”.
“This measure (which was aimed at him) was an international crime that also threatened international peace and security,” he added.
The guilt of the US administration, including those involved in the attack, is evident, the diplomat said.
â€œThe Iranian people, they know [General] Soleimani as a role model for a soldier and the entire population of the region, who see their liberation from the Daesh scourge as a result of his sacrifice, will never cease to seek justice for this massive crime, â€he said.
The world’s human rights organizations are expected to be aware of the scale of the crime and its ongoing impact on the rule of law, human rights and dignity, Baghaei Hamaneh said.
The bodies need to realize the full extent of this “clear example of lawlessness and abuse of the fundamental right to life,” he concluded.