The elite force from Tehran claimed that the suicide bomber who killed 27 members of Iran’s revolutionary guards was a Pakistani national.
“The suicide bomber was named Hafez Mohammad-Ali and was from Pakistan,” said Brigadier General Mohammad Pakpour, commander of the Iran Revolutionary Guards’ ground forces, quoted by the force’s Sepah news agency.
On Sistan-Balochistan border, the attack killed 27 guards of Iran in a bus on 13 February.
The general said the probe into the attack had made headway after the model of the explosives-packed car that exploded next to the bus had been identified.
‘Heart of evil’
The Sunni group Jaish al-Adl (Army of Justice), which says it seeks greater rights and better living conditions for ethnic minority Baluchis in eastern Iran, claimed responsibility for the attack.
Tehran says the group operates mostly out of bases in Pakistan and has repeatedly blamed its neighbour for sheltering individuals connected with attacks in the countries border areas.
Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi told Iran’s state-run IRAN news agency on Tuesday the Islamic Republic faced threats from “a number of hostile intelligence services”.
“They have worked together to challenge the security of the Islamic Republic,” Alavi said.
Alavi’s comments followed a suggestion by Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, last week that “obvious” links existed between the perpetrators of the attack “and the spy agencies of certain regional and extra-regional countries”.
Tehran also accuses regional rival Saudi Arabia of promoting violence among its minority Sunni Muslim population.
“Today, Saudi Arabia is the heart of evil in the region and the world,” Brigadier-General Hossein Salami said on Tuesday, Iran’s Fars news agency reported.
Pakistan and Saudi Arabia deny any role in attacks in Iran.