Gunman kills one and wounds two others after storming Azerbaijan embassy in Iran ‘where his wife vanished eight months ago’
- Attacker gunned down head of security at the Tehran embassy this morning
- He claims his wife has not been seen since visiting the embassy last year
A gunman armed with a Kalashnikov-style rifle has killed one and wounded two others after storming the Azerbaijan Embassy in Iran where his wife allegedly vanished last year.
The attacker gunned down the head of the security at the diplomatic post in Tehran today because of ‘personal and family problems’, police chief Gen. Hossein Rahimi said.
Shocking footage shows the killer barging into the embassy and pointing his firearm at the terrified staff.
Those inside tried to push through metal detectors to take cover. The man opens fire with the rifle, its muzzle flashing, as he chases after the men into the small side office.
A gunman armed with a Kalashnikov-style rifle has killed one and wounded two others after storming the Azerbaijan Embassy in Iran
Then a hero employee bursts from a side door and fights the gunman, trying to wrestle the rifle off him.
Another surveillance video from outside the embassy showed the gunman slam his car into another in front of the embassy.
The gunman then got out and levelled his rifle at a figure inside of the Iranian police stand, who stood still and did nothing as the man stormed the embassy.
Iranian prosecutor Mohammad Shahriari reportedly said that the gunman’s wife had disappeared in April after a visit to the embassy.
The Iranian judiciary’s Mizan news agency quoted Shahriari as saying the gunman believed his wife was still in the embassy at the time of the attack – even though it was some eight months later.
The assault comes as tensions have been high for months between neighboring Azerbaijan and Iran.
Shocking footage shows the killer barging into the embassy and pointing his firearm at the terrified staff
The attacker gunned down the head of the security at the diplomatic post in Tehran today
Then a hero bursts from a side door and fights the gunman, trying to wrestle the rifle off him
A statement from Azerbaijan’s Foreign Ministry said that ‘an investigation is currently underway into this treacherous attack.’
The ministry also described the attacker as destroying a guard post with assault rifle fire before being stopped by the wounded guards, whom authorities described as being in a ‘satisfactory’ condition after being shot.
‘We demand that this terrorist act be investigated and the terrorist be punished,’ Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev said in statement. ‘A terrorist attack against diplomatic missions is unacceptable!’
Associated Press journalists saw the embassy’s front door pocked with bullet holes after the attack.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, Nasser Kanaani, also said his country strongly condemned the attack, which was under investigation with ‘high priority and sensitivity.’
Iranian police stand guard in front of the Azerbaijan Embassy in Tehran after today’s attack
A man gestures at bullet holes left after an attack at the Azerbaijan Embassy in Tehran
Azerbaijan borders Iran’s northwest. There have been tensions between the two countries as Azerbaijan and Armenia have fought over the Nagorno-Karabakh region.
Iran in October launched a military exercise near the Azerbaijan border, flexing its martial might amid the nationwide protests rocking the Islamic Republic.
Azerbaijan also maintains close ties to Israel, which Tehran views as its top regional enemy.
The Islamic Republic and Israel are locked in an ongoing shadow war as Iran’s nuclear program rapidly enriches uranium closer than ever to weapons-grade levels.
Turkey, which has close ties to Azerbaijan, condemned the attack, called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice and for measures to be put in place to prevent similar attacks in the future. Turkey has backed Azerbaijan against Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh.
‘Turkey, which has been subjected to similar attacks in the past, deeply shares the pain of the Azerbaijani people,’ a Turkish Foreign Ministry statement said. ‘Brotherly Azerbaijan is not alone. Our support to Azerbaijan will continue without interruption, as it always has.’