Israel also concerned that Iran will retaliate against Jewish targets overseas, or through one of its proxies in Lebanon or Syria.
Israel raised the alert level of its embassies worldwide on Monday, after an Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps officer was shot dead in Tehran by unknown assailants the day before.
The two assassins fired five bullets at the officer before fleeing the scene on a motorcycle, Iranian state media reported. Though there is no evidence linking Israel to the incident and Iran has not accused it of involvement, Israel is still concerned about the possibility of Iranian retaliation, according to Kan News.
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi eulogized the slain officer, Col. Hassan Sayad Khodayari, and vowed that Iran would “deal with this crime with great vigor.”
In an official statement, Iran condemned what it described as “an act of terrorism on Sunday afternoon in Tehran and the martyr’s death of an IRGC colonel,” calling it “the crossing of a red line that was committed without prior thought about the consequences. The perpetrators of this crime will pay a heavy price.”
Besides raising the level alert at Israel’s diplomatic missions, officials in Jerusalem are also concerned that Iran will retaliate against Jewish targets overseas, or by one of its proxies in Lebanon or Syria, Israel’s Channel 13 reported.
Khodayari was active in the IRGC’s overseas unit, the Quds Force, and was involved in multiple attempts to launch terror attacks on Israeli civilians in Kenya, Colombia, Cyprus and in Turkey, according to Kan News.
It was Khodayari who had tasked Mansour Rassouli with carrying out the assassination of an Israeli diplomat in Istanbul, according to the report. Israeli media reported in late April that Israel’s Mossad intelligence agency had thwarted the plot, which also included the assassination of a U.S. general in Germany and a Jewish journalist in France. According to the report, Rassouli was interrogated by Israeli agents in his home in Tehran.
Rassouli told his interrogators he had received $150,000 from the IRGC to prepare for the mission, and was to receive an additional $1 million after carrying out the assassinations, according to London-based Iran International.
United With Israel staff contributed to this report.
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