Iranian President Hassan Rouhani claims that Israel “directed” the assassination of former top general Qassem Soleimani, who was killed last year in a US airstrike after arriving in Baghdad.
“The martyrdom of General Soleimani was directed by the Zionists, even though Trump was the commander and killer,” Rouhani says, without providing any evidence for the claim.
Rouhani, who was speaking during a cabinet meeting, makes the remarks after a leaked recording of Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif bemoaning Soleimani’s power. Soleimani headed the Quds Force, the overseas branch of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, and was considered the architect of Iran’s regional security strategy.
Iran’s president also calls former US president Donald Trump “a mercenary of the Zionist regime” and says “all his actions were provoked by the Zionists.”
“Of course, the previous US presidents were friends with the Zionists, but were not mercenaries,” he says.