Interior Minister Ahmad Vahidi calls on the Iranian people to close ranks against the enemies as he visits a city which was recently the scene of violence by a terrorist group.
Vahidi on Thursday traveled to Zahedan where he met with the families of those who lost their lives in the terrorist attack on a police station and a mosque in the southeastern city last Friday.
Zahedan is the capital of Sistan and Baluchestan province which is home to Iran's Baloch minority.
The terrorists torched a fire engine, an emergency station, and a bank but their attempts to trigger an ethnic sedition in the region fell flat, thanks to the timely presence of security forces, authorities said.
The attacks, claimed by the so-called Jaish al-Adl terrorist group, left at least 19 people, including police officers, dead and 20 others injured.
Vahidi warned of the enemies’ plots to wreak havoc across Iran.
"People should know that there are many enemies lurking in every corner, so we should stand against them with strength and stop their enmity."
He said that what transpired in Zahedan was "bitter which caused grief to a group of our compatriots", calling it a source of regret and sadness.
"We were faced with a large amount of destruction by rioters and those who targeted the unity, peace and comfort of the Baloch and non-Baloch people. This is not unexpected from the enemy," he said.
“We have a duty to maintain our peace in honor of those who passed away and give a strong response to terrorist groups and rioters because we will not allow them to infiltrate our ranks," Vahidi added.
The minister said, “The enemy has targeted our unity, so we must show more than ever that the effort is futile and that we will defend the strong Iran and our borders and will not allow any meddling in the affairs of our country.”
Vahidi also underscored the need to identify and punish those behind the recent acts of terrorism.
Arms-smuggling gang disbanded in Khuzestan
On Thursday, the commander of the police force of Iran’s Khuzestan Province announced the dismantling of a gang smuggling arms and ammunition in the city of Andimeshk.
Brigadier-General Mohammad Salehi said police identified and arrested members of the four-member gang with two vehicles at the entrance of Andimeshk during a complex operation.
Salehi said 11,600 pistol cartridges, 7,200 Kalashnikov cartridges, two hand-held wireless devices, a large amount of rivets among other things were discovered during the inspection of the seized cars.