Iran general: US will use nuke deal as pretext for attack

Head of Basij forces joins chorus of hard-liners in Tehran voicing opposition to agreement

Tamar Pileggi is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

The nuclear agreement reached between six world powers and Tehran treats the Islamic Republic unfairly and will only increase anti-American sentiment in the country, a top Iranian general said Tuesday, according to state-run media.

A day after the United Nations Security Council adopted the pact amid recriminations from senior Iranian hard-liners, Gen. Mohammad Reza Naqdi claimed Washington was using the accord as pretext for a future US military strike against Iran.

“Any Iranian who reads the Vienna documents will hate the US 100 times more [than before],” Naqdi said Tuesday according to the semi-official Fars News Agency.

“The US needs the agreement merely to legalize the sanctions and continue pressure against Iran,” he added.

The remarks by Naqdi, a commander of the volunteer Basij forces, came one day after the UN Security Council unanimously voted to endorse the deal paving the way to lift crippling international sanctions in exchange for curbs on nuclear enrichment.

Naqdi denounced the language used in Resolution 2231 as inflammatory and hostile toward Iran.

“All paragraphs of the resolution that the US proposed to the UNSC are full of enmity towards Iran and show the US deep grudge against the Iranian nation,” he charged.

Illustrative photo of a Fateh-110 ballistic missile, taken at an Iranian armed forces parade in 2012. ( Commons)
Illustrative photo of a Fateh-110 ballistic missile, taken at an Iranian armed forces parade in 2012. ( Commons)

On Monday, another senior Iranian general expressed his opposition to the deal, saying the pact was unacceptable.

Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari, head of the powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps told the Iranian news agency Tasnim that “Some parts of the draft have clearly crossed the Islamic Republic’s red lines, especially in Iran’s military capabilities. We will never accept it.”

After the Security Council endorsed the agreement, Tehran claimed its ballistic missile program was not subject to the UN resolution that officially

The historic agreement with Tehran was reached last Tuesday in Vienna by the UN council’s five permanent members Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States plus Germany.

Iran says it has built ballistic missiles with a range of 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles), capable of striking its longtime enemy Israel.

The agreement calls on Iran to slash its enrichment activity by two-thirds and open up its nuclear facilities to inspections, including military sites.

Daniel Bernstein and AFP contributed to this report.

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