Iran has denounced the recent U.S. annual report that accuses Iran of supporting world terrorism, saying it is in fact the United States that sponsors terrorism in the Middle East.
Reuters reports that the spokesman for Iran’s UN mission, Alireza Miryousefi, said: “Iran has been the victim of state-sponsored terrorism that has claimed the lives of thousands of innocent Iranian people.”
He added: “Iran has been actively engaged in counterterrorism activities by all possible means and is a party to many international counterterrorism legal instruments.”
On Thursday, the U.S. State Department released a report linking Iran to planned attacks in Europe including Bulgaria. Iran has denied any involvement in the Bulgaria bombing and condemned the incident as “a despicable attempt on innocent people.”
Iran then accuses the United States of sponsoring terrorism, saying the U.S. is in no position to point fingers at other nations with its extensive “history of supporting terrorist groups in our region as well as Israeli state terrorism.”
Iran says one example of U.S. support for terrorism was its recent removal of the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK) from the U.S. list of terrorist organizations; MEK is an exiled Iranian dissident group that fought alongside Saddam Hossein against Iran in the 1980s.
Miryousefi insisted: “The recent delisting of the MEK terrorist group … and also allowing it to publicly lobby in Washington is a clear indication that the U.S. government has double standards in dealing with terrorism and designates others as terrorists only to serve its illegitimate political interests.”
The delisting of the MEK was carried out despite the State Department acknowledgement of the group’s “past acts of terrorism” and “serious concerns with regard to allegations of abuse committed against its own members.”