One guard was killed and two were wounded by a man with an assault rifle, the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said.
A security guard was killed in an attack on Azerbaijan’s embassy in Iran, the country’s foreign ministry said, adding that it would evacuate its diplomatic staff.
“The attacker breached the security post, killing the security chief with a Kalashnikov assault rifle,” the statement said.
Friday’s attack in Tehran also wounded two guards, the Azerbaijani ministry said. An investigation has been launched.
President Ilham Aliyev called the attack on his country’s embassy a “terrorist act” and demanded a swift investigation.
“We demand that this terrorist act be investigated and the terrorist punished,” Aliyev said in a statement. He added that an attack on a diplomatic mission was “unacceptable”.
The incident comes amid months-long tensions between the neighboring nations.
In a strongly worded statement, the Azerbaijani ministry said a recent “anti-Azerbaijani campaign” in Iran had encouraged the shooter. He also accused authorities in Tehran of having long ignored Baku’s calls to beef up security at its embassy.
“Unfortunately, the latest bloody act of terrorism demonstrates the serious consequences of not paying the necessary heed to our constant appeals in this regard,” the statement said.
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani “strongly condemned” the attack, according to state television, saying the matter was being investigated with “high priority and sensitivity.”
Tehran police said they had arrested a suspect and were investigating the shooter’s motives.
There was no indication from statements by Iranian officials that the attack was politically motivated.
The suspect entered the embassy with two children and may have been driven by “personal issues,” Iran’s semi-official Tasnim news agency reported, citing the police chief.
However, surveillance footage shared by Iran’s state news channel Press TV showed what appeared to be a gunman entering the embassy alone and shooting inside the building before fighting with a man who tried to stop him .
Iran’s justice Mizan news agency quoted Iranian prosecutor Mohammad Shahriari as saying the gunman’s wife went missing in April after visiting the embassy. Shahriari added that the man believed his wife was still inside the embassy at the time of the attack.
Turkey, which has close ties to Azerbaijan, condemned the “insidious attack” and called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice. “Azerbaijan is never alone,” Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Twitter.
Relations between Baku and Tehran have traditionally soured, as Turkic-speaking Azerbaijan is a close ally of Turkey, a historical rival of Iran.
Iran, home to millions of ethnic Azerbaijanis, has long accused Baku of stoking separatist sentiment in the country.
Iran is also suspicious of Azerbaijan’s military cooperation with Israel, an arms supplier to Baku, saying Israel could potentially use Azerbaijani territory as a springboard against Iran.