WEB DESK: An Iranian Revolutionary Guards general has been killed near Aleppo while advising the Syrian army on their battle against Islamic State fighters, the guards said in a statement on Friday.
The Guards said General Hossein Hamedani was killed on Thursday night and that he had “played an important role reinforcing the front of Islamic resistance against the terrorists”.
Iran is the main regional ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and has provided military and economic support during Syria’s four-year-old civil war. Hamedani, a veteran of the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war, was made deputy chief commander of the elite forces in 2005. It was the IRGC, loyal to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, that suppressed student protests in 1999 and also silenced the pro-reform protests that followed 2009 presidential elections. They were the most widespread protests since the 1979 Islamic revolution
Hamedani was head of an IRGC unit in charge of security in Tehran, where police, the Guards and its Basij militia allies clashed with protesters. Since 2011, Hamedani has been subjected to international sanctions for violating human rights.
An Iranian official said Hamedani was a close ally of the head of the Quds Force, which is an overseas arm of the IRGC. “Hamedani was a very influential figure and very close to (Qassem) Soleimani. He was an expert of Syria. A very valuable commander and a true believer of Islam and the (1979 Islamic)revolution (of Iran),” the official said on condition of anonymity.