Israel, in collaboration with Iranian terror groups, planned to assassinate Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, says Tehran’s top intelligence official.
Intelligence Minster Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Eje’i said Israeli officials met with the terrorist Mujahedin-e-Khalq Organization (MKO) to execute the plan, according to a report by the semi official Fars News Agency.
“The Zionist regime had met with the MKO on the sidelines of the Sharm el-Sheikh meeting in Egypt and in Paris to assassinate Mr. Ahmadinejad,” Mohseni-Ejeie was quoted as saying on Friday.
The terrorist group had, however, set conditions for carrying out the assassination, he added. “They had asked that the US and the West remove their name from their blacklists.”
The MKO was founded in Iran in the 1960s, but its top leadership and members fled the country some twenty years later after carrying out numerous acts of terrorism inside the country.
The group is especially notorious for the help it extended to former dictator Saddam Hussein during the war Iraq imposed on Iran (1980-1988) and even aided him in the massacre of thousands of innocent Iraqis.
The group masterminded a series of assassinations and bombings inside Iran, including the 1981 bombing of the offices of the Islamic Republic Party, in which more than 72 Iranian officials were killed, including the then Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Mohammad Beheshti.
Another group approached by the Israeli officials, the intelligence minster said, was a Pakistan-based armed terrorist group, known as ‘Jundallah’. Iran’s eastern province of Sistan-Baluchestan has been the target of terror attacks by the group, suspected of affiliation with al-Qaeda.
Two weeks before the June 12 presidential election in Iran, ‘Jundallah’ elements placed a bomb in a crowded mosque in the southeastern city of Zahedan, killing 25 people and wounding 120 more.
A 2007 Sunday Telegraph report revealed that the CIA had created Jundullah and provided it with ‘arms-length support’ and ‘money and weapons’ to achieve ‘regime change in Iran’.
Another report broadcast by the US-based TV network, ABC also revealed that US officials had ordered Jundullah to ‘stage deadly guerrilla raids inside the Islamic Republic, kidnap Iranian officials and execute them on camera’, all as a part of a ‘systematic objective to overthrow the Iranian government’.