Clinton condemns mosque attack

2010-07-16 17:04

Washington – US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton condemned Thursday's "horrific" attacks on a Shi’ite mosque in Iran that killed more than 20 people, and called for the perpetrators to be held accountable.

"I condemn in the strongest possible terms today's terrorist attacks claimed by Jundallah that targeted Iranians at a mosque in the Sistan-Baluchestan province of Iran," Clinton said in a statement.

"The United States extends its sympathy to the families and loved ones of those injured and killed. We also call for the perpetrators of this horrific attack to be held accountable for their actions," she said.

"This attack, along with the recent attacks in Uganda, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Algeria, underscores the global community's need to work together to combat terrorist organisations that threaten the lives of innocent civilians all around the world."

Iranian state media reported that more than 20 people, including worshippers and members of the Revolutionary Guards, were killed by two suicide bombings at a Shi’ite mosque in heavily Sunni southeast Iran.

The attack came as people celebrated the birthday of Imam Hussein, grandson of the Muslim Prophet Muhammad, a day also set apart each year to honour the Revolutionary Guards.

More than 100 people were wounded in the attacks, which came only minutes apart, at the Jamia mosque in the restive city of Zahedan, capital of southeastern Sistan-Baluchestan province bordering Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Zahedan has been repeatedly hit by attacks blamed on Sunni rebel group Jundallah (Soldiers of God), which plays on feelings of resentment among ethnic Baluchis in the province.