An attack-turned-shootout on a police station on Friday left 11 people dead and eight others wounded in southeastern Iran, state TV reported.
Senior police officers and soldiers were among those killed and wounded in the 2 a.m. attack in Rask town, about 875 miles southwest of Tehran, according to Ali Reza Marhemati, the deputy governor of Sistan and Baluchestan province.
The deputy governor said police were able to kill several of the attackers in the shootout.
State TV blamed the attack on Jaish al-Adl, a separatist militant group that typically conduct hit-and-run operations from their hideouts in neighboring Pakistan. In 2019, Jaish al-Adl claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing on a bus that killed 27 members of Iran’s paramilitary Revolutionary Guard.
Jaish al-Adl did not immediately claim the new attack.
Majid Mirahmadi, a deputy interior minister, said two gunmen had been killed in the attack and one was arrested. Eight police officers were left wounded, he said.
Mirahmadi said the attack’s coordination included the gunmen ambushing responding officers to prevent them from assisting in the initial shootout.
A search remains underway in the area to find the gunmen responsible, state media reported.
Videos shared by the advocacy group HalVash, which reports on issues affecting the Baluch people, showed helicopters flying over the area in daylight.
The attack is the latest in a string of attacks by militants and small separatist groups against police stations in recent months as part of a low-level insurgency against the government.
Sistan and Baluchestan province is one of the least developed areas of Iran.
Baluch people in the province have long complained about being treated as second-class citizens by Iran’s Shiite rulers.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.