Abolfazl Sarlak pictured with slain IRGC Commander Qassem Soleimani. (KhabarOnline)

May 15, 2020

Abolfazl Sarlak, a commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), has been killed in Syria, Iranian state media reported.

Iran’s state news agencies have given conflicting reports on how Sarlak was killed. The semi-official Mehr news agency said he was killed by an explosive trap set up by ISIS in eastern Aleppo on Sunday, while the semi-official Fars news agency said he was killed during clashes with “terrorists” in the town of Khanaser in Aleppo.

Sarlak had been fighting “takfiris” in Syria and Iraq “for years,” Mehr said. Iran uses the term “takfiri” to refer to Sunni groups it deems extremist.

Sarlak had been living in Aleppo with his wife and two children, the official IRIB news agency said, adding that he had an “important role” in the IRGC’s headquarters in Aleppo.

The commander was close to slain commander Qassem Soleimani, according to the Iranian media. Soleimani, who headed the Quds Force – the overseas arms of the IRGC – was killed in a US airstrike at Baghdad’s international airport in January.

Following news of Sarlak’s death, IRGC-linked accounts on social media shared an undated image showing him with the new head of the Quds Force Esmail Ghaani.

Al Arabiya

About Track Persia

Track PersiaTrack Persia is a Platform run by dedicated analysts who spend much of their time researching the Middle East, in due process we fall upon many indications of growing expansionary ambitions on the part of Iran in the MENA region and the wider Islamic world. These ambitions commonly increase tensions and undermine stability.