Extracted from the US State Dept. news briefing on terrorism
During a special press briefing at the US Department of State on June 2, 2016, the acting coordinator for counterterrorism, Justin Siberell discussed, among others, the issue of Iranian regime continuing to support terrorism around the world.
He said that the United States continues to work to disrupt Iran’s support for terrorism. Iran remains the leading state sponsor of terrorism globally.
As explained in the report, Iran continues to provide support to Hizballah, Palestinian terrorist groups in Gaza, and various groups in Iraq and throughout the Middle East. Confronting Iran’s destabilizing activities and its support for terrorism was a key element of the US expanded dialogue with the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council, following the leaders’ summit at Camp David in May of last year.
Siberell added that “We’ve also expanded our cooperation with partners in Europe, South America, and West Africa to develop and implement strategies to counter the activities of Iranian-allied and sponsored groups, such as Hizballah.”
In responding to a question on the Iranian regime malicious involvement in other countries in the region including Bahrain and Yemen, Siberell said “we’re concerned about a wide range of Iranian activities to destabilize the region and that includes, certainly, their support for some of these allied groups, proxy groups that operate in Iraq and in Bahrain and in various parts of the Gulf region. And so those are issues that we took up in our conversation with the Gulf Cooperation countries after the Camp David summit and developed an entire agenda to focus on those destabilizing activities,” adding that “yes, there’s a serious concern about Iran’s activities in Yemen too.”
A few minutes later a reporter touched on another dimension of Iran’s malevolent activities, this time in the Western Hemisphere.
A reporter asked: “There is a mention, a brief mention, in the Latin American section, the America section, about Iran – this one again goes to Iran. Have you seen or did you see between 2014 and 2015 an uptick in Iranian activity in Latin and South America?”
Mr. Siberell replied: “I think Iran’s presence in the Western Hemisphere and its support for groups that might be engaged in facilitation or operational planning is a continued concern. And it is going to remain a high priority for us.”