Iran on Sunday, labelled US President, Donald Trump, as a “terrorist in a suit”, after he threatened to hit 52 Iranian sites hard should Tehran attack Americans or US assets in retaliation for the killing of military commander Qassem Soleimani.
“Like ISIS, Like Hitler, Like Genghis! They all hate cultures. Trump is a terrorist in a suit. He will learn history very soon that NOBODY can defeat ‘the Great Iranian Nation & Culture’,” Information and Telecommunications Minister, Mohammad Javad Azari-Jahromi tweeted, according to India Today.
Soleimani, Iran’s Quds military commander, was killed on Friday in a US drone strike on his convoy at Baghdad airport; an attack that has taken long-running hostilities between Washington and Tehran into uncharted territory, and raised the concern of wider conflict in the Middle East.
Giving no indication of seeking to defuse tensions after the strike he ordered, Trump issued a stern threat to the Islamic Republic.
In a series of tweets on Saturday, he said Iran “is talking very boldly about targeting certain USA assets” to avenge Soleimani’s death.
He said the 52 targets represented the 52 Americans held hostage in Iran after being seized at the US Embassy in 1979 during the country’s Islamic Revolution.
Iran’s army chief, Major General Abdolrahim Mousavi, was quoted by state television on Sunday as saying the US lacked the courage for military confrontation with Iran.
“In a potential conflict in the future, which I don’t think they [Americans] have the courage to carry out, there it will become clear where the numbers five and two will belong,” he said.
Trump said on Friday, that Soleimani had been plotting “imminent and sinister” attacks on US diplomats and military personnel.
Democrats have criticised Trump’s action, calling it reckless and risked more bloodshed in a dangerous region.
Thousands of mourners turned out to pay respects to the slain commander on Sunday, after Soleimani’s body was returned to Iran, the official IRIB news agency reported.