Revolutionary Guard members killed in Iran bombing, state media say

Revolutionary Guard members killed in Iran bombing, state media say

Revolutionary Guard members killed in Iran bombing, state media say

The militant Sunni Muslim separatist group Jaish al-Adl claimed responsibility for the attack.

The bombing comes on the day of a USA -led conference in Warsaw, Poland that included discussions of what the United States described as Iran' "malign influence" across the wider Middle East.

In what is seen as one of the deadliest attacks on IRGC personnel inside Iran in years, Wednesday's suicide attacker crashed an explosive-laden vehicle into a military bus, carrying IRGC elite members in southeastern Sistan and Baluchistan province.

A picture released by the Fars news agency showed a hulk of twisted metal lying by the side of a road, unrecognizable as a bus.

Wednesday's violence comes during a month in which Iran has been commemorating the 1979 Islamic Revolution which swept the USA -backed Shah from power.

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The Guard is a major economic and military power in Iran, answerable only to the country's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Some of its fighters are seasonal, including some from Pakistan, who are called upon for occasional operations against Iranian security forces.

However, a bombing like this inside of Iran likely will draw an immediate reaction from the Guard, a massive paramilitary organization that both controls Iran's ballistic missile program and vast chunks of its economy. The group is blacklisted as a "terrorist group" in Iran. At least 18 people were killed and more than 50 wounded.

"Is it no coincidence that Iran is hit by a terror on the very day that the #WarsawCircus begins?" he wrote. "Especially when cohorts of same terrorists cheer it from Warsaw streets & support it with (Twitter) bots?"

The attacks come as Iranian officials have said they blame Saudi Arabia and the United States for stirring up dissent in the country. Trump withdrew the USA from the accord last May. Mark my words: "Iran WILL bring terrorists & their masters to justice", Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif reacted in social media at the time.

He earlier blasted the two-day conference being co-hosted by Washington in Warsaw as "dead on arrival".

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