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Bomb attack on Iran government building in Abadan

Bomb attack on Iran government building in Abadan

The Ahwazi Fatah Brigade has claimed responsibility for a bomb attack on an Iranian government building in the Zulfaqari neighbourhood of Abadan, situated on the Shatt al-Arab.

The armed Arab resistance group, which is fighting against the Iranian regime, said in a statement that the building was attacked at dawn on Thursday. The building reportedly contained the offices of those involved in the acquisition of Arab land for the creation of the controversial 100 sq km Arvand Free Zone (AFZ), which stretches from Mohammareh (Khorramshahr) to Abadan. The Iranian authorities have forced the owners of palm groves and villagers to leave the land and arrested those who refused. Last month, the Iranian regime cut off drinking supplies to Arab villages in order to force them off their lands ahead of acquisition under the auspices of the AFTZ.

The Brigade said it attacked the offices at dawn in order to avoid killing innocent bystanders and claimed to have completely destroyed the building. It said it would continue to target organisations and individuals involved in the free zone. A German business delegation recently pledged US$300 million of investment in the zone with the construction of a paper mill beginning in June. The zone is highly militarised and contains Revolutionary Guards bases used to conduct operations in Iraq.

The Brigade previously claimed responsibility for a series of attacks between August and October 2007, which led to the assassination of two clerics working for the Iranian security services in the region. Former president Mohammad Khatami cancelled a visit to Ahwaz City, intended to raise funds for "reformist" candidates, following threats by the group to assassinate him.

The bomb attack in Abadan comes just days after cleric Abbas Abbasian, also a paramilitary commander, was assassinated at an Iran-Iraq War battlefield. The killing was claimed by the Ahwazi National Resistance Movement. It was the latest in a string of assassinations of Bassij officials in the area.

BAFS does not support separatism or any armed Ahwazi groups, favouring instead a broad coalition based on non-violent civil disobedience to create democratic change in Iran.
Ahwazi group claims responsibility for cleric assassination

Ahwazi group claims responsibility for cleric assassination

The Ahwazi National Resistance Movement has claimed responsibility for the recent assassination of cleric Abbas Abbasian at an Iran-Iraq War battlefield.

Abbasian was a senior cleric from Taibad in Iran's Khorasan province and a commander in the Bassij, Iran's volunteer paramilitary force.

In a declaration sent to the British Ahwazi Friendship Society and signed by "Field Commander Faisal Abda", the separatist group says that it ambushed a Bassij convoy near the Arab-majority city of Al Khafajiyah (Susangerd) with small arms and grenades. It said that the attacks were retaliation for the construction of non-Arab settlements in the area and the government's attempts to break the Arab resistance movement in the region. Abbasian was targetted as he was a representative of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. The group affirmed its right to defend Ahwazi Arab land and "free it from the clutches of the Iranian enemy."

BAFS has no way of assessing whether the claim of responsibility is genuine or whether the group is behind similar attacks in the region. Several assassinations of Bassij commanders have taken place recently in the battlefields, which the Iranian regime has blamed on Britain. It claims that the guns used in attacks were supplied by British forces stationed in Al-Amarah in Iraq.

BAFS previously received a statement from a previously unknown Ahwazi group calling itself the Sa'ad Ibn Abi Waqqas Brigade, which claimed responsibility for an armed attack on a bus travelling along the Bostan-Howaiza road near a battlefield on 27 March. The Brigade claims that it killed four members of the Iranian security forces and injured seven, without sustaining any casualties.

The Brigade said the attack was carried out in response to the torturing and killing of Ahwazi Arabs. It pledged to strike any Iranian military or paramilitary units inside the "occupied Ahwazi territories" in response to the "unjust policies" and would continue the attacks "so long as there is even one Iranian soldier on Ahwazi soil." The armed group is named after Sa'ad Ibn Abi Waqqas, one of the Prophet Muhammed's companions.

It is unknown whether the brigade is part of the Ahwazi National Resistance Movement, but the tactics - ambushes on Bassij officials in the Iran-Iraq War battlefields - are similar.

BAFS does not support separatism or any armed Ahwazi groups, favouring instead a broad coalition based on non-violent civil disobedience to create democratic change in Iran.
Senior Bassij-linked cleric assassinated in Iran-Iraq War battlefield

Senior Bassij-linked cleric assassinated in Iran-Iraq War battlefield

An imam jomeh (prayer leader) from Taibad in Iran's Khorasan province was assassinated while visiting the Arab-majority city of Al Khafajiyah (Susangerd) in the restive Arab-populated region in southwest Iran, according to the Tabnak news website.

Cleric Abbas Abbasian was gunned down along with a number of members of the Bassij, Iran's volunteer paramilitary militia, while visiting Iran-Iraq War battlefields in the area. As an imam jomeh, Abbasian held considerable political power in Taibad. Imam jomehs work closely with the Revolutionary Guards and answer to the Supreme Leader. Abbasian was also a commander in the Bassij, which forms part of the Revolutionary Guards.

Several assassinations of Bassij commanders have taken place recently in the battlefields, which the Iranian regime has blamed on Britain. According to Tabnak, a mobile phone containing British telephone numbers was seized in arrests that followed attacks last month. It also claims that the guns used in the attacks were supplied by British forces stationed in Al-Amarah in Iraq. The Tabnak website is affiliated to Iran's powerful Expediency Discernment Council, the consultative group chaired by Hashemi Rafsanjani and appointed by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei.

The British Ahwazi Friendship Society (BAFS) received a statement from an Ahwazi group named the Sa'ad Ibn Abi Waqqas Brigade which claimed responsibility for an armed attack on a bus travelling along the Bostan-Howaiza road on 27 March at 8pm. The Brigade claims that it killed four members of the Iranian security forces and injured seven, without sustaining any casualties. It says the personnel were travelling to visit an Iran-Iraq War battlefield for the Nowruz holiday. Arab children began attacking the bus convoy with stones before the armed group opened fire.

The Brigade said the attack was carried out in response to the torturing and killing of Ahwazi Arabs. It pledged to strike any Iranian military or paramilitary units inside the "occupied Ahwazi territories" in response to the "unjust policies" and would continue the attacks "so long as there is even one Iranian soldier on Ahwazi soil." The armed group is named after Sa'ad Ibn Abi Waqqas, one of the Prophet Muhammed's companions. It is unknown whether the group is responsible for other attacks in the area, including the assassination of Abbasian.

BAFS does not support separatism or any armed Ahwazi groups, favouring instead a broad coalition based on non-violent civil disobedience to create democratic change in Iran.