Outreach movement Chabad warns emissaries worldwide to be on high alert following Soleimani assassination.
By Benjamin Kerstein, The Algemeiner
The Hasidic outreach movement Chabad has sent a warning to its emissaries around the world urging them to be on high alert following the US assassination of Iran’s terror chief Qassem Soleimani on Thursday night.
Iran has threatened aggressive retaliation, and has previously orchestrated terrorist attacks on Jewish targets overseas. Chabad centers, operated by some 5,000 emissaries around the world, many in developing countries, have been singled out by Islamist terror operatives in the past.
In an email to its emissaries, reprinted at Chabad blog anash.org, the Chabad-Lubavitch Security Commission stated, “Soleimani’s death will likely mark a major escalation in a simmering conflict between the US and Iran and there is a strong likelihood that Iran will retaliate whether directly or indirectly.”
“Although there is no information at this time to suggest a direct threat to Chabad centers as a result of this escalation,” the email continued, “as in past conflicts, there exists a concern that the current situation and tensions could contribute to a heightened risk and threat environment for Jewish facilities and Chabad centers, particularly from those inspired by current events; a risk that may be exacerbated should military action escalate in coming days and weeks.”
“Being that those planning such attacks operate globally, we urge all of our centers around the world to be on high alert,” the email stated. “We encourage you to maintain a heightened awareness when out in public and in and around your Chabad House. Report any suspicious behavior or activity to the nearest law enforcement personnel.”
The message also denounced Soleimani, saying he “was known to be a long-time nemesis of Israel and was the architect of many rocket attacks on Israel.”
Soleimani was head of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps’ Quds Force, which coordinates and carries out Iranian actions overseas, including acts of terrorism. He was killed at Baghdad airport by an American drone strike.