Iran hardliners protest Japanese PM’s mediation with US

Iran’s semiofficial news agency is reporting that dozens of hardline students have gathered outside of Tehran’s Mehrabad International Airport, where the Japanese premier’s plane earlier landed, to protest over possible efforts by Shinzo Abe to calm tensions between Iran and the United States.

Fars news agency reports that protesters said “the efforts by Japan’s prime minister for mediating between Iran and the US [are] useless, and if this is the goal of the trip, it will have no achievement.”

Students held placards, written in Farsi and Japanese, mocking Abe as “Japan’s representative or America’s ambassador.”

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (2nd L) is greeted by Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (3rd L) at Tehran’s Mehrabad airport on June 12, 2019 (ALI TAGHAVI / ISNA / AFP)

A hardline newspaper also criticized Abe’s visit by printing an image showing the mushroom cloud of a nuclear blast on its front page: “How Can You Trust A War Criminal, Mr. Abe?” This appeared to refer to America dropping atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II.

— AP

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