Iran, March 18, 2019 - Keyhan, a state-run Iranian newspaper and the mouthpiece of the regime’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, published an article on March 16, revealing its concerns and anxiety about the fate of Assadollah Assadi, an Iranian terrorist diplomat from Tehran’s embassy in Vienna who was detained last year on terrorism charges in Germany and awaits trial.
June last year, Assadi, Iran’s then third man in Austria, allegedly gave high explosives to an Iranian couple to bomb the annual gathering of the Iranian opposition. A few days later he was arrested in Germany and subsequently extradited to Belgium.
“Now, nearly nine months after the arrest, detention, and trial of Assadollah Assadi, there is still no news about the fate of his case,” Keyhan writes.
The newspaper then continues to blame the Iranian foreign ministry and the so-called moderates for the disaster and writes: “It is interesting to know that Iran’s ambassador to Austria has shown no reaction until now about the detention of his diplomat! A senior foreign ministry diplomat who didn’t want his name revealed said: ‘What happened to our diplomat Assadollah Assadi, maybe you can say that it is unprecedented in our diplomatic history.’”
Keyhan then complains about Iranian diplomats being expelled from the Netherlands and France in recent months and writes: “Earlier this year , two Iranian diplomats were quitely expelled from Netherlands, because of accusation of participating in the assassination of two opponents of the Islamic Republic in that country. Another Iranian diplomat was expelled from France for unknown reasons.”
“Then on July 2, 2018, we were informed that Assadollah Assadi the third secretary of Iran’s embassy in Austria has been detained by German police on July 2 on orders from the French security establishment. On September 27, Western media reported that the Iranian diplomat was extradited to Belgium and now, nearly nine months after the arrest, detention, and trial of Assadollah Assadi the is still no news about the fate of his case and the foreign ministry still hasn’t been able to demand the basic rights of this Iranian diplomat from European countries as it ought to be,” Ali Khamenei’s Keyhan further complains.
Keyhan then describes the government’s inaction vis a vis its recent diplomatic setbacks as a policy of silence and smile and attacks Hassan Rouhani saying: “Political pundits believe that the diplomatic establishment of Hassan Rouhani not only hasn’t reciprocate all these expulsions and Assadollah Assadi’s detention as it is customary, but prefers to ignore them with a policy of silence and smile.”
Keyhan then reveals Khamenei’s nightmare of an organized opposition that has been committed to regime change in Iran for years and doesn’t play the with the circus of fake opposition between so-called reformists and hardliners inside Iran.
“Despite French claims of combatting terrorism and the country’s officials’ continuous statements about it, in practice we are witnessing that France supports the PMOI,” Kehyan writes.
“France supporting the PMOI” is more than exaggerated to say the least.
What Khamenei means by “supporting” is that France abides to the rule of law and freedom of speech is still valued and protected in this country and political activity is tolerated.
What the Iranian regime expects France to do with the PMOI is to detain, expel and extradite every last of them regardless of individual merit and record, violating every hard-fought-for value of Western civilizations. By Tehran’s standards, a good example to follow for France would be the Iraqi government of Nouri Al-Maliki, which issued phony indictments against PMOI members every other month and regularly attacked PMOI/MEK camps when they were in Iraq.
And at last Keyhan newspaper mentions the terrorist plot against the Iranian opposition in Paris last year that put Tehran’s diplomat and foreign relations establishment in its current dilemma in the first place.
“Investigations and accusations against the third secretary of Iran’s embassy in Austria is about a bombing plot of PMOI’s gathering on June 30, 2018, in France. He [the diplomat] is accused of urging an Iranian couple in Belgium to attack this gathering,” Kehyan writes.
“The couple has been arrested while in possession of 500 grams of acetone peroxide, a very potent explosive, and a detonator. Police claims that they are suspecting Assadi of having transported the explosive to the couple.”
It is noteworthy that Assadi was Iran’s chief intelligence officer in Austria while its embassy in Vienna supervises all of Iran’s intelligence mission throughout Europe.