In the days before and after January 3, 2023, the third anniversary of the assassination of Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) Qods Force commander General Qassem Soleimani, hashtags used by radical Sunni organizations in Pakistan calling Soleimani an "international terrorist," "killer Qassem Soleimani," and "the killer of the Ummah" and marking January 3 as "Salvation Day" for Muslims, were trending. Some of the tweets reflect hostility toward the West and Jews.
General Qassem Soleimani – known for establishing and running pro-Iran militias to advance Iran's strategic and ideological interests outside Iran – was killed in a U.S. drone strike near Baghdad International Airport on January 3, 2020.
The campaign mainly comprised two hashtags: "#BloodyKillerQassemSoleimani" and "#InternationalTerroristQassemSoleimani."
On January 8, a Twitter handle describing itself as "Siddiqui Media Pakistan" questioned why some groups in Pakistan were praising Soleimani. He tweeted on January 8: "It is an extremely shameless act to mark the death anniversary of the killer of hundreds of thousands of Muslims in a Muslim country [Pakistan]."
Siddiqui Media Pakistan also tweeted that Qassem Soleimani "colluded with Israel when he provided intel support to Israel" for the assassination of Hamas leaders. It described January 3 as a "Salvation Day."
Twitter user M. Rizwan Chohan said Qassem Soleimani was "a bloodthirsty Iranian pig who collaborated with America to dismantle the Taliban government in Afghanistan in 2001." Al-Haideri Media Mansehra, which appears to be based in the Pakistani town of Mansehra, also described January 3 as "Salvation Day" and wrote in Urdu: "The accursed General Qassem Soleimani was the most dangerous bloody enemy of Sunni Muslims in the entire Middle East."
To read the full MEMRI report click here.