No:053/23, Press release on the details of the terror attack on the Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan in the Islamic Republic of Iran

As a result of the terror attack on the Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan in the Islamic Republic of Iran on January 27 of this year, the head of the security service of the Embassy, Orkhan Asgarov, was killed, and two staff members, Vasif Taghiyev and Mahir Imanov were seriously wounded.


The terror attack was thoroughly recorded through the embassy's surveillance cameras.


Before attacking, the terrorist drove past the embassy twice with his car on January 27, 2023, at 08:05 and 08:24, to choose a suitable moment for the attack.


At 08:32, immediately after embassy staff entered through the main entrance of the Embassy’s administrative building, the terrorist deliberately crashed his vehicle at high speed into the Embassy service vehicle parked in front of the Embassy building. The terrorist, taking advantage of the Embassy staff member reacting to the resulting noise and opening the door of the Embassy, took an automatic rifle from his vehicle, gestured to the Iranian police officer posted at the entrance, and immediately entered the embassy building while opening fire.


At 08:34, 2 minutes after the terrorist entered the embassy, an Iranian police vehicle arrived at the embassy, but after a few seconds of conversation with a police officer posted at the entrance, it left the area.


During 4 minutes, until 08:36, the terrorist fired numerous shots at Embassy staff inside the Embassy administrative building, and as a result, Embassy staff member Orkhan Asgarov died on the scene from a gunshot wound, another staff member Mahir Imanov was seriously wounded in his right arm and left leg. Another staff member Vasif Taghiyev attacked and engaged the terrorist in hand-to-hand combat in order to neutralize him. While neutralizing the terrorist, Embassy staff member was wounded in the shoulder by the terrorist opening fire from the rifle. Despite the injury, he continued to fight with the terrorist and succeeded in removing the magazine of the terrorist’s rifle. At this time, the terrorist took out the pistol from his jacket and opened fire, this time wounding V.Taghiyev in the chin (later, during the inspection of the Embassy territory, a “Colt” type pistol that was dropped by the terrorist was found in the territory). Despite being wounded, V. Taghiyev was able to push the criminal out of the embassy building.

Despite the forceful entry of the terrorist into the Embassy, continuous gunshots being heard from the Embassy, and V. Taghiyev calling for help to neutralize the terrorist, the Iranian police officer posted at the entrance not only did not intervene in the incident but even abandoned his post and left the area.


The terrorist pushed out of the Embassy building, took a spare magazine from his jacket, reloaded his rifle, gestured to someone twice, then fired continuously at the Embassy entrance, as well as at the windows of the apartments in the embassy building where the family members of the diplomats live. During this time, the terrorist ignited the tires of the Embassy vehicle twice in order to burn it with the combustible substance he brought with him.


Seeing that the entrance door was strong and it was difficult to open it with rifle fire, the terrorist tried to break the door with a heavy mallet taken from the trunk of his car and entered the Embassy for the second time with the intent to kill diplomats and their family members. V. Taghiyev threw a fire extinguisher at the terrorist who, while firing from his weapon, tried to go up to the second floor of the Embassy, injuring him in the head (this moment was not depicted by the surveillance cameras), and as a result, the terrorist was forced to leave the building.


After going out into the street, the terrorist once again gestured to individuals standing in the distance and put down his rifle, and even then, the police did not approach him. Taking advantage of the police again not intervening in the incident, the terrorist tried to set ablaze the Embassy vehicles parked in front of the Embassy building with a “Molotov cocktail” that he retrieved from his vehicle. At this time, police immediately intervened as the terrorist accidentally set himself on fire.


The police did not hurry to arrest the terrorist, started talking to him, did not treat him like a criminal, and took a spectator position. Taking advantage of this, the terrorist wandered the area for some time and started threatening and insulting the Embassy diplomats saying “I will kill all of you”. The police, again, did not react to this. Afterward, the terrorist freely approached the mallet which he used to break down the Embassy building’s door, retrieved it, and placed it in his vehicle.


Later, the terrorist insisted that V. Taghiyev, who was at the time demanding the terrorist to be arrested from the Embassy window, come down, and when V. Taghiyev came down, he threatened him again and wanted to attack him.


Only afterward the police handcuffed the terrorist, put him in a car, and left the area. At this time, an unknown person with a mask on his face took unknown items from the terrorist's car and left the area.


It should be noted that in recent days, inaccurate comments regarding the chronology of the terror attack were made on some social networks and media resources. The main reason for this was the wrong references to the timing in the video footage. In this regard, it should be noted that the Embassy cameras monitoring the street show the time 24 minutes earlier than the real-time. This difference is due to some technical factors.


The facts that the terrorist chose Friday, which non-working day in Iran to commit the attack (to minimize the circumstances that could interfere with the terror act), that he brought with him to the scene an automatic rifle and a full spare magazine, a "Colt" type pistol, a "Molotov cocktail", a heavy mallet and other means, the fact that the Iranian police did not intervene in the terror act gives grounds for presuming that the incident was planned in advance.



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