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Iran slams report linking it with blast near Israel embassy

Policemen stand guard near the Israeli Embassy after a blast in the area in New Delhi, India. File Photo.  

The Iranian embassy denied any connection between the Quds Force, an arm of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), and the Improvised Explosive Device (IED) blast outside the Israeli embassy in Delhi in January.

In an official statement on Monday, the embassy “strongly repudiated” the allegation carried in a news report that suggested that the National Investigation Authority (NIA) had “concluded” that the attack on January 29 had been carried out by an Indian proxy group on the orders of the Quds force, in retaliation for the deaths by U.S. drone of Quds force Chief General Qasem Soleimani and top nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh last year.

“While respecting the honourable government and authorities of India in their endeavour to thoroughly investigate and probe into the [January 29] incident in order to identify the orchestrators of such actions and to bring them to justice, this embassy strongly repudiates any unsubstantiated allegations or irresponsible comments in this regard,” the statement said, adding that the allegations of an Iranian hand were aimed at “spoiling” bilateral relations.

“[It] is the presumption that this act must have been conducted by third parties who are angry and dissatisfied with the progress in the relations between the governments of Iran and India.”

The Ministry of External Affairs did not comment on the newspaper report that alleged the link, nor did it respond to questions from The Hindu about whether it has conveyed any conclusions from the investigation to the Iranian or the Israeli government.

While no one had been injured in the attack, the proximity of the IED to the high security zone where the Israeli embassy is located was seen by the police as an indication of the seriousness of the threat. Requesting not to be identified, a police official told The Hindu that while the investigation continues, they had narrowed suspicions on two individuals who are believed to have hired a taxi to the Israeli embassy on the Abdul Kalam Road, who are believed to have had links with a “foreign national”.

In its statement the Iranian embassy said it “strongly [condemned] any act which ensues intimidation and fear, disruption of order and security, and jeopardising the lives and property of the innocent people”.

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Printable version | Apr 11, 2021 2:37:48 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/iran-slams-report-linking-it-with-blast-near-israel-embassy/article34021884.ece

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