US Role in Promoting Terrorism Denounced

US Role in Promoting Terrorism Denounced
US Role in Promoting Terrorism Denounced

Iran’s ambassador to the United Nations slammed the United States for policies that are akin to acts of terrorism or paving the way for its growth in remarks delivered at the Virtual Counter-Terrorism Week on Friday. 
“The imposition by the US of its laws and regulations with an extraterritorial impact on my country and others is, by definition, tantamount to terrorism,” Majid Takht-Ravanchi said at the session convened under the overarching theme of Strategic and Practical Challenges of Countering Terrorism in a Global Pandemic Environment, IRNA reported.
Highlighting the US maximum pressure policy against Iran, the Iranian envoy said it is designed to deliberately and indiscriminately target innocent civilians with the sole purpose of causing pain and suffering to them.
Washington imposed sweeping sanctions on Tehran in 2018 after its unilateral withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal. Its so-called “maximum pressure” campaign aims to force Iranian leaders to renegotiate a new deal, but the economic impacts of the policy have directly affected the lives of ordinary people. 
“These actions constitute terrorist acts and, in the broader context, economic terrorism,” Takht-Ravanchi said. 
He also pointed to the US “brutal and cowardly” assassination of Iranian top commander Major General Qasem Soleimani, the champion of fighting terrorists in the region, as another obvious example of state terrorism pursued in gross violation of the fundamental principles of international law, which entails criminal culpability for its perpetrators.
Major General Soleimani and his companions were assassinated by US drones while on an official visit to neighboring Iraq in early January. 
“This tragedy was a big gift to Daesh [the self-styled Islamic State terrorist group] and other terrorist groups in the region, which celebrated his assassination,” he said.  
Takht-Ravanchi said challenges facing collective and coordinated responses to terrorism mostly emanate from unilateral and coercive approaches that deny the required tools and hinder cooperation and genuine efforts in this endeavor, “hence providing a breeding ground for terrorism”.
“The [coronavirus] pandemic has even exacerbated the consequences of such a vicious approach.” 
The UN envoy underlined the fact that foreign interventions and aggression in the Middle East, especially in Iraq and Syria, have also helped create the current violent extremist and terrorist groups.
In addition, he said, the excessive and disproportionate use of military force, including drones, in the name of countering terrorists has created fertile grounds for vicious cycles of violence and terrorism leading to disastrous results.



Unsubstantiated Claims

Takht-Ravanchi later referred to remarks by the US representative at the same event, describing them as “unsubstantiated claims” against Iran.
“It is common knowledge that Iran has been at the forefront of combating terrorist groups such as Al-Qaeda and IS,” he said. 
Nathan A. Sales, US State Department’s coordinator for counterterrorism, had claimed that Iran remained the “world’s worst state sponsor of terrorism”.
He accused Iran of continuing to plot attacks across the world, including a plan to assassinate an opposition figure in the Netherlands in 2017 and 2018, and a plot to bomb a political rally near Paris in 2018. 
“Iran also continues to back numerous terrorist proxies around the world,” he alleged, citing deadly attacks against US and Iraqi military personnel and facilities by what he called Iran-supported terrorists in Iraq.
The American official also claimed that Iran has supplied Houthi fighters in Yemen with weapons that they have used to attack airports, energy infrastructure and other civilian facilities in Saudi Arabia and the UAE. 
“And Iran continues to work hand in glove with Hezbollah, a truly global terrorist threat,” Sales alleged.
Takht-Ravanchi denied the accusations, saying it is in fact the US that is promoting terrorism not only in this region, but almost everywhere in the world. 
“The United States’ interventionist approach in our region has created chaos and an environment fertile for terrorism to grow,” he said. 
He blamed the US for harboring the MKO (the Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization), a notorious and dangerous terrorist organization responsible for the killing of at least 12,000 Iranians and many Iraqis.
The MKO political-militant organization advocates overthrowing the Islamic Republic leadership and installing its own government.
“By providing the deadliest weaponry to aggressors in the conflict in Yemen, the US is responsible for the continued catastrophe in that country resulting in the terrorizing and killing of many innocent Yemenis,” Takht-Ravanchi said at the close of his speech. 
A Saudi-led coalition that supports the ousted government of Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi has been fighting the Houthis in Yemen for about five years in a war that has brought the Arab country to the verge of famine, creating the world’s worst humanitarian crisis of the time.     

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