Alwaght- Hundreds of thousands of Iranians poured into the streets across the country on Friday to demand taking revenge from the US after American forces assassinated IRGC Quds Force commander General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad.
Massive crowds rallied in many cities across Iran to display their resolve to avenge General Soleimani, who was assassinated along several others, including Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy chief of the Iraqi pro-government Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) early on Friday.
The protesters expressed solidarity with General Soleimani’s family and echoed a statement by Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei, who earlier in the day vowed a “severe revenge” in response to the move by the US military.
In capital Tehran, tens of thousands of people attending the Friday prayers held a rally after the event, carrying signs that warned the United States, Israel and their regional allies of harsh consequences.
Leading the prayers this week was Ayatollah Sayyed Ahmad Khatami, who said the attack means “Americans around the world will never experience calm again.”
He said General Soleimani was the mastermind of the battle against the Western-backed ISIS terrorist group and the administration of US President Donald Trump will pay the price for assassinating him.
“The Americans should beware that they did not achieve victory here and rather took one more step towards annihilation,” Ayatollah Khatami said. “Today, the world and the resistance movements in Syria, Lebanon and other places are mourning Gen. Soleimani and want to avenge his blood.”
“The Americans, Trump in particular, can rest assured that Gen. Soleimani’s blood will erupt and we will take our revenge against them and turn their bright day into black night,” he said.
In his sermon, which was mostly dedicated to the Iranian general, Ayatollah Khatami also said the US strike shows it is time to purge US forces from the region.
“The time has arrived for the resistance to tell the Americans in practice to ‘Get out of the region you savages!’” he asserted.
In General Soleimani’s hometown of Kerman, huge crowds took to the streets to vent their anger at the United States.
Thousands of people gathered at General Soleimani’s house in the provincial capital of Kerman, where he used to hold annual mourning ceremonies for Shia Imams on their martyrdom anniversaries.
Hojjatoleslam Hassan Alidadi, Kerman’s Friday imam, said the resistance front will even the score with the US.
“The outcome of this bloodshed is the end of US military presence in the region and the resistance front’s final victory over Israel,” he said.
Similar events were held in Qom, Tabriz, Lorestan and other cities.
Iran's Leader names new Quds commander
Iran’s leader Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei has appointed Esmail Qaani as the new head of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force.
"Following the martyrdom of the glorious general Qasem Soleimani, I name Brigadier General Esmail Qaani as the commander of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps," the Leader said in a statement posted on his official website.
In the statement, the Leader described Gen. Qaani as one of the IRGC's most prominent commanders during Saddam's imposed war on Iran, which lasted eight years starting in 1980.
Esmail Qaani was serving as the Quds force's deputy commander prior to the new appointment on Friday.
The IRGC confirmed earlier on Friday that Gen. Soleimani had been assassinated in US airstrikes in Baghdad.