Iran has summoned UAE’s charge d’affaires over “idiotic” remarks made by a senior Emirati official about a terrorist attack that left 25 people dead Saturday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said on Sunday.
“Following idiotic remarks by an Emirati political adviser on the terrorist attack in Ahvaz, the United Arab Emirates’ charge d’affaires was summoned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs by the head of the relevant political office and the Islamic Republic of Iran’s strong protest at the irresponsible and insulting remarks was conveyed to him,” Qassemi said.
“At the meeting, the Emirati charge d’affaires was warned that the blatant support for terrorist acts by an individual affiliated to the official Emirati agencies will bear responsibility for the UAE government, and indifference to it will not be acceptable,” he added.
The summon came after Abdulkhaleq Abdulla, a political adviser to Emirati Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, said the attack in Ahvaz was justified and that “attacking a military target is not a terrorist act”.
“Moving the battle deeper inside Iran is a declared option and will increase during the next phase,” he added.
Iranian authorities also summoned ambassadors of the Netherlands and Denmark as well as chargé d’affaires of the British Embassy in Tehran after the shooting spree during a military parade.
Qassemi said the three diplomats were summoned separately on Saturday to declare Tehran’s strong protest at the role their countries played in supporting elements who carried out the terror attack.
The attack was roundly condemned by a whole host of authorities and governments including UN chief Antonio Guterres, Russia, France, the UK, Germany, Austria, Spain, Turkey, Qatar, Egypt, Kuwait, and Oman.
Even the US State Department issued a rather belated denouncement of the incident, but Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain refrained from condemning it.
The al-Ahvaziya terror group, whose recruits are believed to be scattered in several European countries, including in the Netherlands and Denmark, claimed responsibility for the attack.
The terror outfit, which is backed by Saudi Arabia, has a record of carrying out acts of sabotage in Iran’s Khuzestan Province, which encompasses Ahvaz and some other Arab-dominated towns.
‘Crushing response awaits terrorists’
Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Baqeri said on Sunday the regional countries hostile to Iran have to “rectify their inimical behavior” and apologize to the Iranian people.
“Otherwise, the Armed Forces reserve the right to deliver a crushing response at a time and place of their choosing to instances of antagonism against the Iranian nation and pursue criminals in every corner of the world,” he added.
Iran’s Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami also said a “crushing and surprising” response awaited the terrorists.
The “blind act once again indicated the weakness and abasement of the global arrogance and its lowly regional allies” because they are incapable of directly confronting the Islamic establishment, he said.
Hatami assured the Iranian people that the country’s defense forces would not rest until they eradicated the “abominable phenomenon” of terrorism.