Iran’s foreign minister on Wednesday accused Israel’s Mossad intelligence agency of carrying out “false flag” operations in a bid to undermine the Islamic Republic’s global standing.
The claim came after Israeli officials said the Mossad tipped off its Danish counterpart to a plot by Iranian intelligence to kill three opposition figures living in Denmark.
Iran has denied it was behind the alleged assassination plans, which were revealed by Denmark on Tuesday, claiming they were part of a European conspiracy against it.
“Mossad’s perverse & stubborn planting of false flags (more on this later) only strengthens our resolve to engage constructively with the world,” Mohammad Javad Zarif wrote in a tweet accompanied by photos of him meeting with officials from Pakistan, Azerbaijan and Turkey.
Mossad's perverse & stubborn planting of false flags (more on this later) only strengthens our resolve to engage constructively with the world. Imp talks in Pakistan today, preceded by tripartite mtng with Turkey & Azerbaijan yesterday. Solid relations w/neighbors our priority. pic.twitter.com/FuRI82XWQn
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) October 31, 2018
Denmark’s accusations against Iran followed the unveiling of another suspected Iranian plot to target a Paris rally by an opposition group in June. According to Israeli reports, the Mossad helped thwart that attack as well, which led to the arrest of several Iranians in Europe, including a diplomat.
US President Donald Trump has cited Iran’s support for terror around the globe as a reason behind his decision to pull out of the 2015 nuclear deal and reimpose sanctions, most of which kick back into effect next week.
Earlier Wednesday, Denmark’s prime minister said he was speaking with European countries about possible sanctions on Iran over the alleged attack plot, but said any response should not undermine the nuclear deal.
That sentiment was echoed by the European Union, who has played a key role in working to preserve the agreement after Trump announced in May the United States would pull out of the pact negotiated under his predecessor Barack Obama.
Denmark on Tuesday announced it was recalling its ambassador to Iran after the Danish intelligence service PET accused the Iranian intelligence service of planning the attack.
ASMLA is a separatist group that advocates an Arab state in a southwestern Iranian province. Tehran calls it a terrorist organization.
A Norwegian of Iranian origin was arrested on October 21 for allegedly planning the attack and spying for Iran.
In late September, Tehran accused Denmark, the Netherlands and Britain of “hosting several members of the terrorist group” that Iran holds responsible for an attack in the mainly ethnic Arab city of Ahvaz in southwestern Iran.
The September 22 attack, during which five commandos opened fire on a military parade, left 24 people dead.
The so-called Islamic State jihadist group and a separatist Arab group claimed responsibility, and Iran staged several operations in Iraq and Syria in response.
Zarif’s accusations against the Mossad also came as Israeli television reported Wednesday that Iranian infrastructure and strategic networks have come under attack in the last few days by a computer virus similar to Stuxnet, a virus uncovered some eight years ago that was widely reported to have been developed together by US and Israeli intelligence services.