US, NEW YORK (ORDO NEWS) — Iran has become a new base for the terrorist group Al-Qaeda. This statement was made on Tuesday by US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo.
“Now the largest country sponsoring terrorism, the Islamic Republic of Iran, has become the home of al-Qaeda, its partner in terrorism, partner in hatred. This axis poses a serious danger <…>, including for the mainland America. I would say that Iran has actually become the new Afghanistan as a new geographic center of activity for al-Qaeda. But in reality, the situation is worse. Unlike Afghanistan, where al-Qaeda was hiding in the mountains, in Iran it is today acts under the firm cover of the Iranian regime,”- said the head of the US Foreign Ministry.
He gave a speech at the National Press Club of Washington, in which, without citing irrefutable evidence, in fact, he accused Tehran of an alliance with the al-Qaeda terrorist network.
According to the head of American diplomacy, the deputies of the current leader of al-Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahiri, are currently in Iran. Pompeo also said that the former “number two” of the group, Abdullah Ahmed Abdullah (nicknamed Abu Muhammad al-Masri), was actually shot dead last summer in Iran, as previously reported by the American press, which called the Israelis responsible for this operation. “Today, for the first time, I can confirm his death on August 7 last year,” the US Secretary of State said. He did not explain who carried out this operation.
In addition, Pompeo announced the appointment of a cash reward of $ 7 million for information that could lead to the capture of one of the leaders of al-Qaeda and the imposition of sanctions against other such attackers. The list of those terrorists, for whose head the American authorities have established a reward, included Mohammed Abbatai (also known as Abdel Rahman al-Maghribi) who is allegedly hiding in Iran. Sultan Yousef Hasan al-Arif, Ismail Fuad Rasul Ahmed, Fuad Ahmed Nuri Ali al-Shahan and Niamat Hama Rahim Hama Sharif were included in the sanctions lists, along with him. The latter three are named as the leaders of the Al-Qaeda Kurdish Battalions, a group that allegedly operates on the border between Iran and Iraq, and the sanctions applied in this case include, first of all, a ban on American citizens from doing business with these persons.
Along with this, the US State Department again recalled the monetary reward for data on such key leaders of al-Qaeda as the Egyptian Seif al-Adl, who was once the head of its military wing, and Yasin al-Suri. Both of them, as stated in a press release from the US Foreign Ministry, are in Iran.
The group’s new headquarters?
According to Pompeo, there are “far fewer” al-Qaeda fighters in Afghanistan “than there have been in [the last] decades.” The American military operation in Afghanistan has forced the group to seek new refuge, Pompeo said. “And she (Al-Qaeda – ed. note) found him. The Islamic Republic of Iran was an impeccable choice,” the US Secretary of State said. From his point of view, al-Qaeda has actually maintained relations with Tehran for almost three decades.”
“Iran has decided to allow al-Qaeda to create a new operational headquarters. Provided that al-Qaeda fighters comply with the regime’s rules governing the presence of the group inside the country <…>. Since 2015, Iran has also provided ringleaders.” Al Qaeda has “more freedom of movement in the country under surveillance,” Pompeo said.
He said that the secret services and the Guard Corps are also providing technical support to the Al-Qaeda network, including through the processing of documents for it. “As a result of this assistance, al-Qaeda has centralized its leadership in Tehran. Ayman al-Zawahiri’s deputies are there today,” Pompeo said.
In his opinion, al-Qaeda was able to re-start considering the possibility of conducting “global operations”, planning “attacks around the world.” Iran allows the group to collect funds, maintain communication between its members, the secretary of state said.
As Pompeo believes, “the time has come for America and all free countries to crush the Iran-Al-Qaeda axis.” We are telling the truth about the nature of Iran-Al-Qaeda interaction. We took significant action to destroy it. We call on all states to do the same for the sake of their own people, security, stability and prosperity of the world, “Pompeo added.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif categorically rejected the statements of his American counterpart. “No one is misled. All of the 9/11 terrorists  came from Secretary of State Pompeo’s favorite destinations in the Middle East. None were from Iran,” the foreign minister wrote in English on his Twitter . The perpetrators of the September 11, 2001 attacks were mostly Saudi Arabians.
Zarif described the “declassified information” announced by the US Secretary of State as fiction. Pompeo, who, along with the rest of the Trump administration, is scheduled to hand over power to the new US government on January 20, is ending his disastrous career by speaking out with “new lies that incite war,” Zarif is convinced.
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