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Iranian Scientist And Senior Military Officer Die In Mysterious Circumstances

Iranian Scientist And Senior Military Officer Die In Mysterious Circumstances

The deaths have been surrounded by conflicting reports

A military officer and a weapons engineer have died in mysterious circumstances in Iran, with conflicting reports surrounding what happened. 

On Friday, official news agency IRNA reported that Colonel Ali Esmailzadeh had died under unconfirmed circumstances. 

The report stated simply that Esmailzadeh had died in an ‘incident in his residence’ in the city of Karaj, some 35 kilometres (19 miles) north-west of the capital Tehran. 

No further details were given and there were subsequent conflicting reports from various news outlets that claimed his death had been a suicide, a fall from a balcony or murder, The New York Times reports.

However, IRNA denied claims he had been assassinated.  

His death came just weeks after two unidentified gunmen on a motorbike shot Colonel Hassan Sayyad Khodaei five times in a car in front of his residence in Tehran.

Members of Iran Revolutionary Guards Force.

Iran blamed his killing on the United States and its allies, including Israel.

Iran traditionally blames Israel for such targeted killings, including those on nuclear scientists over the past years.

But two Isreali defence officials told The New York Times, that Israel did not kill Colonel Esmaelzadeh

Both Esmaelzadeh and Khodaei were officers in the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Force, Unit 840 - a group that was branded a terrorist organisation by former US President Donald Trump. 

Following Khodaei's death, General Hossein Salami, the commander in chief of the Revolutionary Guards, said in a speech on Monday: “We will make the enemy regret this and none of the enemy’s evil actions will go unanswered.”

Alongside the deaths of Esmailzadeh and Khodaei, Ayoob Entezari, an Iranian aerospace engineer who worked on developing missiles and drones, has also died in ‘unclear’ circumstances. 

Islamic Revolutionary Guards Force General Hossein Salami.

According to The Times of Israel, Entezari was employed at a research and development centre in the city of Yazd, where he carried out his work on missiles and drones. 

Some reports claim Enterzari died of food poisoning, but as yet there has been no official cause of death announced. 

Last month, Israel warned its citizens against travel to Turkey, citing Iranian threats of revenge for the killing of Khodaei.

According to a report from Reuters, Israel's National Security Council said in a statement that Tehran could be looking to harm Israelis in Turkey and classified it as a ‘high-risk country’. 

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Featured Image Credit: Alamy/AbuAliEnglishB1/twitter

Topics: World News