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Iran says CIA behind nuclear scientist’s killing
Question of the Day
Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan was killed in a brazen daylight assassination Wednesday when two assailants on a motorcycle attached a magnetic bomb to his car in the Iranian capital. The killing bore a strong resemblance to earlier killings of scientists working on the Iranian nuclear program, and has prompted calls in Iran for retaliation against those deemed responsible.
The IRNA state news agency said Saturday that Iran's Foreign Ministry has sent a diplomatic letter to the U.S. saying that it has “evidence and reliable information” that the CIA provided “guidance, support and planning” to assassins “directly involved” in Roshan’s killing.
The U.S. has denied any role in the assassination.
IRNA also reported that Iran delivered a letter to Britain accusing London of having an “obvious role” in the killing. It said that a series of assassinations began after British intelligence chief John Sawers hinted in 2010 at intelligence operations against the Islamic Republic.
Britain’s Foreign Office has condemned the killing of civilians. Israeli officials, in contrast, have hinted at covert campaigns against Iran without directly admitting involvement.
The killing has sparked outrage in Iran, and state TV broadcast footage Saturday of hundreds of students marching in Tehran to condemn Roshan’s death and calling for the continuation of the country’s disputed nuclear program.
In the clearest sign yet that Iran is preparing to strike back for Roshan’s killing, Gen. Masoud Jazayeri, the spokesman for Iran’s Joint Armed Forces Staff, was quoted by the semiofficial ISNA news agency Saturday as saying that Tehran was “reviewing the punishment” of “behind-the-scene elements” involved in the assassination.
“Iran’s response will be a tormenting one for supporters of state terrorism,” he said, without elaborating. “The enemies of the Iranian nation, especially the United States, Britain and the Zionist regime, or Israel, have to be held responsible for their activities.”
Jazayeri also accused the International Atomic Energy Agency of being partially to blame, saying that the U.N. nuclear watchdog made public a list of Iranian nuclear scientists and officials that “has provided the possibility of their identification and targeting by spy networks.”
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