Syria: Israeli Strike Destroyed Part of Iran's Embassy

Airstrike killed senior Iranian military adviser, according to Syrian state media
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 1, 2024 2:04 PM CDT
Syria: Israeli Strike Destroyed Part of Iran's Embassy
Emergency services work at a building hit by an airstrike in Damascus, Syria, Monday, April 1, 2024.   (AP Photo/Omar Sanadiki)

An Israeli airstrike has destroyed the consular section of Iran's embassy in Syria, killing a senior Iranian military adviser and several other people, Syrian state media said Monday. The strike on the Iranian consulate building in Damascus could mark an escalation of the Israeli military's ongoing targeting of Iranian military officials and allies in Syria, which have intensified since the onset of its war with Hamas in Gaza on Oct. 7, the AP reports. Israel, which rarely acknowledges such strikes, said it had no comment about the Syrian media reports.

The Iranian Arabic-language state television Al-Alam and pan-Arab television station Al-Mayadeen, which has reporters in Syria, said the strike killed Iranian military adviser Gen. Ali Reza Zahdi, who led the elite Quds Force in Lebanon and Syria until 2016. Iran said several long-serving diplomats were also killed. Iranian Ambassador Hossein Akbari condemned Israel and said as many as seven people were killed, but first responders were still searching for any other bodies under the rubble. He said two police officers who guard the building were wounded. Akbari vowed revenge for the strike "at the same magnitude and harshness."

"We consider this aggression to have violated all diplomatic norms and international treaties," said Iran's foreign minister, Hossein Amirabdollahian, per the Guardian. Iranian state television said the Iranian ambassador's residence was in the consular building, which stood next to the embassy. State news agency SANA, citing an unnamed military source, said the building in the tightly guarded neighborhood of Mazzeh was leveled.

(More Iran stories.)

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