| GEO World|
| Jundullah claims Iran suicide bombings|
| Updated at: 0606 PST, Friday, July 16, 2010|
TEHRAN: Two suicide bombings at a Shiite mosque in heavily Sunni southeast Iran killed more than 20 people Thursday, including worshippers and members of the Revolutionary Guards, state media reported.
Meanwhile, a Sunni rebel group, Jundullah has claimed responsibility, saying the bloody bombings were carried out in a bid to take avenge of the murder of its leader, Abdolmalek Rigi, who was hanged to death by Iranian government.
The attack came as people celebrated the birthday of Imam Hussein, grandson of the Muslim Prophet Mohammed, 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.
"Two explosions in front of the Zahedan Jamia mosque left more than 100 wounded and more than 20 martyred," Fariborz Rashedi, the head of the emergency services of Sistan-Baluchestan province, told state news agency.
Zahedan MP Hossein Ali Shahriari told Fars news agency the attacks were carried out by suicide bombers, with the first by a man dressed as a woman.
"The attacker, dressed in women's clothing, was trying to get into the mosque, but was prevented," Shahriari said.
"When people came to rescue those hit in that blast, another bomber blew himself up."
Agency said the first attack was around 9:20 pm (1650 GMT).
Deputy Interior Minister Ali Abdollahi said it was carried out by a suicide bomber where worshippers were being frisked before entering the mosque.
"That attack resulted in the martyrdom of several, including some of the Revolutionary Guards," he said.
Abdollahi said the second attack took more casualties as people rushed to the site of the first bombing.
Agency said the explosions were powerful because its reporter covering the blasts could see parts of bodies scattered in and around the mosque as medical workers collected them.
Window panes of nearby buildings were shattered from the impact of the explosions and two vehicles close to the mosque were also damaged, the agency said.
The head of Guards political bureau, Yadollah Javani, pointed the finger at United States, Israel and other Western countries as possible planners of Thursday's bombings.