Iran indicts 14 for scientist’s killing

None of the suspects names or nationalities were revealed, although the Islamic Republic continues to blame Israel for the assassination of Dr. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. 

By Erin Viner

Tehran’s Attorney-General Ali Salehi has announced that indictments have been issued “14 persons” involved in the that the Islamic Republic has attributed to Israel.

The individuals have been charged with “corruption on the earth,” “involvement in intelligence and espionage cooperation with the Zionist regime,” “collusion with the purpose of undermining the security of the country,” and “action against national security,” the Tehran Times cited the top prosecutor as saying.

Fakhrizadeh, who was considered the father of Iran’s nuclear program, served as Iran’s Deputy Defense Minister after having been a General in Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) and earned a Ph.D. in nuclear physics. He was killed in a multi-pronged terrorist attack on 27 November 2020  while driving with his wife to their country home just outside Tehran.

Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani has publicly blamed on “terrorists from the Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO/MEK), Jerusalem and the Israeli Mossad intelligence agency. Other Ayatollah Regime officials have at various times accused Western intelligence operatives or Saudi Arabia with involvement in the attack.

The Islamic Republic has long threatened to avenge Fakhrizadeh’s killing.

In September 2021, the New York Times has published a report alleging that Israel assassinated the senior nuclear scientist with a state-of-the-art remotely controlled “killer robot.”

According to the article, Israel had held Fakhrizadeh in its sights for at least 14 years as part of its ongoing campaign to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. The following year, the paper said that then-Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert played a recording in Jerusalem for visiting-President George W. Bush of what 3 people who heard the tape said was Fakhrizadeh speaking “explicitly about his ongoing effort to develop a nuclear warhead.” While exposing a secret Iranian nuclear archive a decade later in 2018, Israel’s then-Premier Benjamin Netanyahu referred to Fakhrizadeh several times warning: “Remember that name,” he said. “Fakhrizadeh.”

The United States was informed of the impending assassination by Mossad Director Yossi Cohen “toward the end of 2019 and in early 2020,” said the NYT.

While Jerusalem has never publicly confirmed or denied involvement in Fakhrizadeh’s death, former Mossad Chief Cohen acknowledged last year that the agency had long monitored Fakhrizadeh’s activities.

Arch enemies Iran and Israel
 have long been engaged in a “shadow war,” including mutual accusations of cyber warfare. In addition, Jerusalem accuses Tehran of working to develop atomic weapons and using terrorist proxies to launch terror attacks against Israeli citizens. In July, United States President Joe Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid signed a joint pledge to prevent Iranian acquisition of atomic arms. The Ayatollah regime, which has repeatedly vowed to annihilate the Jewish State, insists its nuclear program is peaceful and denies seeking nuclear weapons; while maintaining that Israel has carried out a number of assassinations of its military and nuclear leaders, including that of a senior officer in May. Israel has neither confirmed nor denied any such actions.

Iran often accuses its enemies or rivals abroad, such as Israel, the United States and Saudi Arabia, of trying to destabilize the country. It also routinely arrests and executes suspects accused of committing espionage on behalf of other nations, particularly Israel.

Jerusalem stepped up its national security yesterday, cautioning that Iran and Islamist terror groups are seeking to carry out terror attacks against Israeli and Jewish targets.

The Islamic State and its supporters “continue to show motivation” to kill Israelis and Jews worldwide as evidenced in “frank statements on the part of the heads of organizations,” said Israel’s National Security Council.