Following the killing of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force,
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Friday warned that a “harsh retaliation is waiting” for the USA.

The Iranian state TV carried a statement by Khamenei who also called Soleimani “the international face of resistance.” Khamenei declared three days of public mourning for the general’s death.

The Iranian foreign minister warned that the U.S. would bear all the consequences of the “foolish” military attack, claiming Soleimani’s assassination would only escalate tensions in the region given that he was “THE most effective force” fighting terrorism carried out by the Islamic State.

Javad Zarif, the foreign minister of Islamic Republic of Iran, said on Twitter that “The US’ act of international terrorism, targeting & assassinating General Soleimani—THE most effective force fighting Daesh (ISIS), Al Nusrah, Al Qaeda et al—is extremely dangerous & a foolish escalation.”

The US’ act of international terrorism, targeting & assassinating General Soleimani—THE most effective force fighting Daesh (ISIS), Al Nusrah, Al Qaeda et al—is extremely dangerous & a foolish escalation.

Zarif references three affiliated Sunni Muslim extremist groups who’ve held territory in Iraq and Syria. The modern Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has ties that date back to the rise of al Qaeda in 2004 after the U.S. invaded Iraq the year before.