Monday, 10 December, 2018

Iran holds USA, regional allies accountable for Ahvaz deadly terror attack

Iran vows'crushing response after gunmen kill 29 at army parade Iran holds USA, regional allies accountable for Ahvaz deadly terror attack
Melinda Barton | 24 September, 2018, 07:44

"Iran will respond swiftly and decisively in defence of Iranian lives", Zarif wrote on Twitter.

The UAE minister of state for foreign affairs, Anwar Gargash, for his part, stressed his country's rejection of acts of terrorism and accused Tehran of a campaign of "official incitement" against the Emirates.

London-based opposition channel Iran International TV on Saturday aired an interview with Yaqoub Hor Altostari, presented as a spokesman for ADPF, indirectly claiming responsibility for the attack and calling it "resistance against legitimate targets".

USA ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley has urged Iran to "look in the mirror" for the causes of an attack on a military parade that killed at least 29 people on Saturday. The video's authenticity has not yet been confirmed.

An Iranian soldier runs past injured comrades lying on the ground at the scene of an attack on a military parade in the southwestern Iranian city of Ahvaz on September 22, 2018.

"It is absolutely clear to us who committed this crime. and whom they are linked to", he said.

The U.S. supports mercenary countries in the region and provides them with help, however, these actions do not affect our people's determination.

Rouhani said the U.S. supports small "puppet nations" in the Persian Gulf that in turn back those behind the attack.

Tensions have been on the rise since the Trump administration pulled out of the 2015 nuclear accord with Iran earlier this year and began restoring sanctions that were eased under the deal.

"America is acting like a bully towards the rest of the world. and thinks it can act based on brute force", said Rouhani.

Iran limited its enrichment of uranium, making it virtually impossible for it to quickly develop nuclear weapons, something the government insists it has never sought.

Iran has previously blamed Saudi Arabia for supporting Arab separatists in the Islamic republic.

Mr Rouhani did not specify which "puppet" countries he was referring to - but his comments are widely thought to be directed at Iran's regional foe Saudi Arabia, and the UAE and Bahrain.

Who does Iran blame for the attack?

Washington also condemned attack on Sunday but said the country's leaders needed to look at reasons for unrest.

He warned the United States will regret its "aggressiveness".

The United Kingdom's ambassador to Iran Rob Macaire tweeted his condolences.

The State Department later offered a statement from spokeswoman Heather Nauert, who said that the US government was aware of the reports of an attack.

The Iranian consulate in Basra, in turn, has been attacked several times during this same period, with Tehran laying the blame at the feet of the U.S. (also without clear evidence). "The thing he's got to do is look at the mirror".

But the move turned out to be a false flag, with Mr Rouhani later pinning the blame on neighbours much closer to home.

The Daesh militant group claimed responsibility for the rare assault.

Saturday's assault, one of the worst ever against the most powerful force of the Islamic republic, struck a blow at its security establishment at a time when the United States and its Gulf allies are working to isolate Tehran.

Asked if Mr Trump would like to meet with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the highest authority in Iran, Mr Pompeo replied, "The President has said he'll talk with anyone if we can have a constructive conversation".

State television gave a toll of 29 dead and 57 wounded in the attack, while official news agency IRNA said those killed included women and children who were spectators at the parade.

Fereidoun Majlesi, a former diplomat and foreign policy expert, told MEE: "I think the proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran is entering a unsafe phase".

Mostly Shi'ite Muslim Iran is vying with Western-allied Sunni Muslim Saudi Arabia for predominance in the Middle East.

"The Saudis' plan is wrong. If you want the best for the Iranian people, why are you pressuring them?" This is the characteristic of Iranians.

"The people of Iran obviously have now had enough", Giuliani said on Saturday. "It is Americans who instigate them and provide them with necessary means to commit these crimes", Rouhani said before leaving for the U.N. General Assembly in NY.

One of the victims was a four-year-old girl.

The attack in Ahvaz, which saw women and children flee with uniformed soldiers bloodied, has further shaken the country.