Iran re­jects French con­cerns, vows to keep fight­ing ter­ror

Tehran Times - - POLITICS -

Iran has dis­missed France’s “con­cern” about its re­cent re­tal­ia­tory mis­sile strikes against ter­ror­ists based in Iraq’s semi­au­tonomous Kur­dis­tan re­gion, pledg­ing to keep neu­tral­iz­ing ter­ror groups that pose a threat to its sovereignty.

“Iran has time and again made it clear by is­su­ing nec­es­sary warn­ings that it will keep clamp­ing down on all shapes of ter­ror­ism and vi­o­lence on its bor­ders and that it will con­tinue im­ple­ment­ing this sub­stan­tive pol­icy,” Iran’s For­eign Min­istry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said in a press brief­ing on Thurs­day.

The re­marks came shortly af­ter the French For­eign Min­istry said it “strongly con­demns” the Sept. 8 mis­sile attack by the Is­lamic Rev­o­lu­tion Guards Corps (IRGC) against tar­gets in north­ern Iraq.

Dur­ing the attack, which was car­ried out in re­tal­i­a­tion for cross-border in­cur­sions by Iraqi-based ter­ror­ists, the IRGC fired no less than seven short-range mis­siles at a gath­er­ing of ter­ror­ist com­man­ders, killing a num­ber of them and de­stroy­ing a mil­i­tant train­ing base in the process.

The French For­eign Min­istry said in a state­ment that it “reaf­firms the im­por­tance of re­spect­ing Iraq’s sovereignty and re­it­er­ates its con­cern over the de­vel­op­ment of Ira­nian mis­sile pro­grams.”

Qassemi slammed France’s re­fusal to ad­dress ter­ror­ist at­tacks against Iran from the Iraqi side of the border in the past and called on Paris to be “more sen­si­ble.”

“Ter­ror­ism must be con­demned re­gard­less of how and where it takes place and with­out any po­lit­i­cal reser­va­tion,” he said, adding that coun­tries can­not be se­lec­tive in con­demn­ing ter­ror­ism.

Re­fer­ring to a ter­ror attack in July that had killed 11 Ira­nian guards near the border with Iraq, Qassemi noted that pun­ish­ing the per­pe­tra­tors and putting an end to such at­tacks was “the least that the Ira­nian na­tion ex­pected”.

He said Tehran had long warned both Iraqi and Kur­dish of­fi­cials of ter­ror­ist ac­tiv­i­ties tak­ing place un­der their watch and ex­pressed its de­ter­mi­na­tion to stop those ac­tiv­i­ties.

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