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Tehran official sacked over ‘embassy attack’

10 January 2016 8:22


Iran’s Interior Ministry Spokesman Hossein-Ali Amiri says the deputy governor general of Tehran Province for security affairs was removed due to the dereliction of his duties in the case of the recent attack on the Saudi embassy in Tehran.

Speaking in a televised interview on Saturday, Amiri said Safar-Ali Baratlou had also previously received notices, adding, “He did not fulfill his duty in a timely manner and was sacked upon a decision by Interior Minister [Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli].”

Amiri condemned the attacks on Saudi embassy in Tehran and its consulate in the northeastern city of Mashhad and said the security and intelligence bodies should have drawn up strategies to prevent the occurrence of such incidents.

The spokesman noted that the Interior Ministry has detained about 60 people with regard to the embassy attack and investigations have launched into the case.

The culprits will be handed over to judicial officials, Amiri said.

Following Saudi Arabia’s announcement of the execution of prominent Shia cleric Nimr al-Nimr on January 2, angry protesters held demonstrations in front of the Saudi embassy in Tehran and its consulate in Mashhad. The demonstrators censured the Al Saud family for the killing of Sheikh Nimr. Some people mounted the walls of the consulate in Mashhad while incendiary devices were hurled at the embassy in Tehran.

After the incidents, Saudi Arabia severed diplomatic relations with Iran on January 3.

On January 6, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called for an urgent investigation into the assaults on Saudi Arabia’s diplomatic missions, saying the perpetrators must be “brought to justice.”

In a letter to Iran’s Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Sadeq Amoli-Larijani, President Rouhani said the Judiciary must prosecute those involved in this “evidenced offense” in a bid to bring a halt to such attempts against the standing of the Islamic Republic’s establishment.

Sheikh Nimr was shot by Saudi police and arrested in 2012 in Qatif in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province, which was the scene of peaceful anti-regime demonstrations at the time.

He had been charged with instigating unrest and undermining the kingdom’s security. He had rejected all the charges as baseless.

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