Iran criticizes Western war against terrorism

Vienna – Iran sharply criticized the Western powers’ approach to fighting terrorism Saturday as superficial and biased.

Iran’s Ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh told delegates participating in a UN-sponsored counter-terrorism symposium in Vienna that the West’s actions only led to an increase in violence.

‘The unsuccessful experience of major powers in their superficial, improper and biased approach to combating terrorism has been ineffective in decreasing terrorist threats,’ he was quoted as saying by the Iranian IRNA news agency.

At the two-day meeting which concluded on Friday, Soltanieh, who represents his country at the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency, denounced the attempt to establish a connection between terrorism and religion.

‘Worst of all are the attempts made to associate terrorism with a certain religion and culture,’ he said.

The reasons behind terrorism were foreign occupation, discrimination, the West’s double standards in politics and economy, and so-called ‘state terrorism,’ Soltanieh argued.

The ambassador also belaboured Western support for the exiled anti-Iranian People’s Mujaheddin (MEK), whom Iran regards as a terrorist organization, formerly under the protection of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.

The Vienna counter-terrorism symposium was aimed at propelling forward the UN-strategy for fighting terrorism.

The participants from approximately 100 UN member states were asked to present their issues and discuss strategies.

dpa – Deutsche Presse-Agentur – May 19, 2007

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