Iranian official accuses Israel of killing Fakhrizadeh remotely | Israel
A senior Iranian security officer offers a completely different account of the high profile attack.
Tehran, Iran – Israel murdered a leading Iranian nuclear scientist using remote-controlled technology, a senior Iranian security official claimed on Monday.
“Unfortunately the operation was very complicated and was done with electronic devices and no [perpetrators] were there, ”said Ali Shamkhani, Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council of Iran, told reporters during Mohsen Fakhrizadeh’s funeral ceremony.
Shamkhani said there was no doubt that Israel and its national intelligence service Mossad were behind the attack.
Israel wanted to kill Fakhrizadeh for 20 years, the official said, adding, “this time the enemy used a completely professional, sophisticated and new method,” which was ultimately successful.
He also accused the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK) – a foreign-based Iranian “regime change” organization – of playing a role in the attack without elaborating on it.
Iran regards MEK as a terrorist organization and accuses several European countries of hosting its members.
Fakhrizadeh, a senior nuclear and military scientist, was killed in broad daylight Friday after an explosion and automatic gunfire near Tehran.
Shamkhani’s statements on Monday drastically alter the original account of Fakhrizadeh’s murder.
It was reported that a pickup truck parked on the side of the road exploded and then several armed men opened fire on the vehicle carrying fakhrizadeh, fatally wounding it and one bodyguard.
But Shamkhani’s comments are more in line with several reports in the Iranian media last day.
“Do you remember that name”
On Sunday, the semi-official Fars News website announced that a remote-controlled machine gun was mounted on the pickup truck that later exploded.
Several bullets were first fired, causing Fakhrizadeh to leave his bulletproof vehicle believing something was wrong with the car. He was then hit with several rounds, the report said.
The previous Monday, the English language broadcaster Press TV on state television reported that a weapon recovered from the site of the attack bore “the logo and specifications of the Israeli military industry”.
Al-Alam, the state broadcaster’s Arabic-language broadcaster, claimed that the weapons used were “controlled by satellite”.
All of the news outlets cited unnamed sources and did not immediately offer evidence to support their claims.
Iran has vowed revenge for the assassination of Fakhrizadeh and urged the international community to condemn it expressly as an “act of terrorism”.
Israel and Western intelligence have viewed Fakhrizadeh for years as the head of Iran’s secret nuclear weapons program, which was disbanded in 2003.
In 2018, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu explicitly mentioned Fakhrizadeh in a presentation and said: “Remember this name”.
About a decade ago, a number of successful attacks were directed against senior Iranian nuclear scientists. Israel has long been suspected of carrying out these attacks.