Iran on Friday accused the United States of creating the murderous Islamic State, Boko Haram and al-Nusrah terrorist groups.
The commander of Iran’s ground forces, Brigadier General Ahmad Reza Pourdastan, said the US had established these terror groups to harm Islam and bolster Israel’s security.
“The ISIL (another name for Islamic State), Boko Haram and al-Nusrah have been created in line with the US strategy of religion against religion, which seeks to impair the divine face of Islam,” Pourdastan said, according to the Iranian Fars news agency.
“The American and European people’s high tendency towards Islam and (the necessity for) protection of the Zionist regime’s security have caused the US to create the terrorist groups,” he added, in an address at Tehran University.
A senior adviser to Iran’s supreme leader issued similar accusations earlier in the week. Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s top adviser for international affairs, Ali Akbar Velayati, called extremist groups including Islamic State “the protégés of the Americans.”
Khamenei himself routinely calls for “Death to America,” even as the US leads world powers in negotiations with Iran on its nuclear program. Talks aimed at reaching a final deal by June 30 are set to resume next week.
President Barack Obama on Friday left the door open to meeting Iran’s demand for all sanctions to be lifted on the day the deal takes effect, although the US has hitherto stated that a framework agreement reached in Lausanne earlier this month provides only for phased relief of sanctions as Iran complies with elements of the deal.
The Lausanne talks went ahead as a senior Iranian military commander declared that Israel’s destruction was “nonnegotiable.”
In a speech marking Holocaust Remembrance Day on Wednesday night, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu charged that the West was “comatose” and delusional” in capitulating to Iran as it seeks nuclear weapons, and compared the regime in Tehran to Nazi Germany.