[Marxism] Iran says US-backed Sunnis in Pakistan carried out attack in Iran

Fred Feldman ffeldman at bellatlantic.net
Sun Feb 18 16:54:56 MST 2007

Note that the Times headline is deliberately uninformative about the fact
that it is the US, not Sunni insurgents in Iraq, who are being criticized
here, and that the issue is an attack on Iran, not attacks in Iraq.
Fred Feldman


February 18, 2007
Iran Ties Sunni Insurgents to Base in Pakistan 

TEHRAN, Feb. 18 - The Iranian Foreign Ministry charged Sunday that Sunni
insurgents from Iran used Pakistan as a base to plan a bombing that killed
11 people and wounded more than 30 in the southeastern border city of
Zahedan last week, and it said that it had demanded an explanation from the
Pakistani ambassador. 

"We summoned the Pakistani ambassador to explain what happened," Mohammad
Ali Hosseini, a spokesman for the ministry, said during his weekly news
conference on Sunday. "Both sides will suffer from insecurity and we decided
to set up a committee to raise the security at the borders," he said.

A car loaded with explosives detonated in front of a bus carrying members of
the Revolutionary Guards last Wednesday. 

A second bomb was set off in Zahedan on Friday evening. The semiofficial
Fars news agency reported that it caused no casualties. But the news agency
said the police clashed with an armed group and exchanged gunfire after the
Zahedan, the capital of the province of Sistan-Baluchistan, is home to many
ethnic Baluchis, who are Sunni Muslims. A majority of Iranians are Shiites.
A Baluchi group opposed to the government, the Jondollah Organization of
Iran, claimed responsibility for both attacks. 

A senior security official said 65 people had been arrested in connection to
the blasts. 
Newspapers in Tehran reported Sunday that the state-run Hamoun channel in
Sistan-Baluchistan broadcast a two-minute confession by a suspect, Nasrollah
Shamsi Zehi, who was accused of being involved in the deadly bombing. He
said he had robbed a bank in Zahedan, then escaped to Pakistan where he was
trained by Jondollah for two months and was told that he would receive
$1,200 for each mission.

Iran has accused the United States and Britain of provoking the Sunni
insurgents. The authorities have said that the efforts are part of the plot
to sow discord among Sunnis and Shiites in the country. Gen. Mohammad
Ghaffari, a commander of security forces in the province, told the Fars news
agency that a film that was confiscated from the suspects proved that the
group was "affiliated to intelligence agencies of some of the foreign
countries, such as the U.S. and Britain."

The news agency also quoted what it called informed sources as saying that
the explosives used in the bombings were American. 

Iran blamed the United States and Britain for a series of bombings in the
southern city of Ahwaz in Khuzestan Province in 2006. Those bombings were
also carried out by Iranian Sunnis. The government hanged 12 men after
accusing them of carrying out the attacks, which killed eight people. 

Tensions have increased between Iran and the United States in recent months.
The United States has accused Iran of secretly trying to develop nuclear
weapons and of arming Shiite insurgents in Iraq. Iran has rejected both
charges and contends that the United States wants to find a scapegoat for
its problems in Iraq. 

The Revolutionary Guards announced Sunday that they would hold three days of
maneuvers starting Monday. The exercises, at least the second so far this
year, are aimed at displaying Iran's military capacity as concerns about a
confrontation with the United States are increasing. 

The maneuvers will take place in 16 of Iran's 30 provinces, and 60,000
soldiers will take part, the IRNA news agency reported Sunday. 

More information about the Marxism mailing list