The Iranian Foreign Ministry has condemned the hostage-taking incident in Sydney, Australia, adding that it had warned Australian authorities on several occasions about the history and the mental problems of the hostage-taker over the past two decades.
Mohammad Hassan Manteghi, also known as Man Haron Monis, was a 50-year-old Iranian refugee in Australia who took a group of people hostage on Monday December 15 in a café in Sydney. He was killed along with two of the hostages when the café was stormed by police.
Marzieh Afkham, a spokeswoman for Iran’s Foreign Ministry, said in a report on IRNA that the “history and the mental-psychological state of this Iranian individual, who became a refugee in Australia about two decades ago, was repeatedly discussed with Australian authorities and his situation was completely clear to Australian officials.”
Afkham condemned “the publication of inaccurate and incomplete news regarding this Iranian refugee.”
AFP had reported earlier that, according to Australia’s Channel 10, Hassan Manteghi had asked to be provided with the flag of the extremist group ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
Australian media report that Manteghi has a history of offences with the Australian police. Manteghi, who referred to himself as Sheikh Haroon, wore the attire of Shia clergy members but had reportedly become a Sunni.
He was reportedly a suspect in the death of his wife, who was stabbed to death and burned. Reports add that the hostage-taking followed his attempts to get an acquittal, which failed at the Supreme Court of Australia on Friday.