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Dozens killed in Iran suicide attack.

Summary: A suicide bomber has killed 29 people in an attack on Iran's Revolutionary Guards.

A suicide bomber has killed 29 people in an attack on Iran's Revolutionary Guards.

Six senior commanders died and another 28 people were injured in the attack on a meeting with tribal chiefs in the city of Sarbaz in Sistan-Baluchestan.

The province in Iran's turbulent southeast is the scene of frequent clashes between security forces, Sunni rebels and drug traffickers.

Local reports said an ethnic Baluchi Sunni rebel group called Jundollah had claimed responsibility for staging the attack, the worst on the elite Revolutionary Guards in recent years.

But the Guards themselves accused the US and Britain of involvement. A state television broadcast said: "Some informed sources said the British government was directly involved in the terrorist attack ... by organising, supplying equipment and employing professional terrorists."

The Foreign Office did not directly comment on the accusation but said in a statement that Britain "condemns the terrorist attack in the province of Sistan and Baluchestan in Iran and the sad loss of life which it caused. Terrorism is abhorrent wherever it occurs."

The bombing and allegations of foreign involvement are likely to raise tension between Tehran and the West, a day before nuclear talks in Vienna including Iranian, US, French and Russian officials.

The Revolutionary Guards is an elite force seen as fiercely loyal to the values of the 1979 Islamic revolution. It handles security in sensitive border areas.

Jundollah, which claimed responsibility for a bomb attack on a Shia mosque in May that killed 25 people, says it is fighting for the rights of Iran's minority Sunnis.

Independent Television News Limited 2009. All rights reserved.

Independent Television News Limited 2009. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Independent Television News Limited (ITN)
Date:Oct 22, 2009
Words:296
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