The Daily Beast
Elements of Iran’s clandestine services are making increasingly bold and potentially dangerous moves across Europe and Africa, using diplomatic missions abroad as tools to project power in ways not seen since the 1990s, say security officials and counterterrorism experts.
The alleged surge in activity includes assassination plots, accusations of an attempted bombing, and the reported arming of rebel groups far from Iran’s borders.
Taken together they add a potentially new and worrying dimension to the tensions between Tehran and the United States over Iran’s nuclear program, refinement of missile technology, and backing for militias in the Middle East.
This week German authorities charged an Iranian diplomat with masterminding an alleged plot to bomb the meeting in France of an exiled opposition group, the National Council of Resistance of Iran.
Among those in attendance: former New York mayor and current US President Donald Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, who has long been a favored speaker at NCRI events.
According to the German prosecutor, the third counselor of the Iranian embassy in Vienna, known as Assodolah Assadi, handed an Iranian-Belgian couple in Luxembourg an explosive device with half a kilogram of the explosive TATP to be used to bomb the June 30 gathering in the Villepinte suburb of Paris.
Iran has demanded Assadi’s release on grounds of diplomatic immunity and accused its enemies of concocting a false flag operation.
Assadi and the couple remain under arrest.
US officials paint the Iranian government as responsible for the alleged bombing scheme.
They reject the notion of a false flag, meaning a set-up by others meant to implicate Iran, and say they are working with Belgian, Austrian, and German investigators.
Last Modified: 07 14 2018 10:58 AM
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