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News number: 8804270755

13:37 | 2009-07-18


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Intelligence Min: Israel Plans to Assassinate Ahmadinejad

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian Intelligence Minister Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejeii said that Israel plotted to assassinate President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in collaboration with the anti-Iran terrorist group, the Mojahedin-e-Khalq Organization (MKO).

"(Officials of) the Zionist regime of Israel had meetings with MKO on the sidelines of the Sharm el-Sheikh (summit) in Egypt to assassinate Mr. Ahmadinejad. Such meetings also took place in Paris," Ejeii said on Friday.

About the MKO's response to Israel's plot, the intelligence minister noted, "The MKO had set conditions for doing the task, asking them (Israelis) to take the organization off the US and the West's terror list."

Ejeii also pointed out that the Israelis then turned to terrorist gangs active in eastern Iran and presented them with a series of information in an attempt to reach their goal.

The Pakistan-based armed terrorist group, 'Jundallah', regularly attacks Iran's eastern province of Sistan-Baluchistan and is suspected of affiliation with the al-Qaeda.

Ejeii said that Tel Aviv has not dismissed the plan for assassinating the Iranian president and it is still working on the plot.

The intelligence minister reminded that Israel was the most stubborn opponent of Ahmadinejad's reelection in the recent presidential voting in Iran for his anti Israeli stance.

"Therefore they decided to kill him," he continued.

The MKO is behind a slew of assassinations and bombings inside Iran, a number of EU parliamentarians said in a recent letter in which they slammed a British court decision to remove the MKO from the British terror list. The EU officials also added that the group has no public support within Iran because of their role in helping Saddam Hussein in the Iraqi imposed war on Iran (1980-1988).

The group, founded in the 1960s, blended elements of Islamism and Stalinism and participated in the overthrow of the US-backed Shah of Iran in 1979. Ahead of the revolution, the MKO conducted attacks and assassinations against both Iranian and Western targets.

The group started assassination of the citizens and officials after the revolution in a bid to take control of the newly established Islamic Republic. It killed several of Iran's new leaders in the early years after the revolution, including the then President, Mohammad Ali Rajayee, Prime Minister, Mohammad Javad Bahonar and the Judiciary Chief, Mohammad Hossein Beheshti who were killed in bomb attacks by MKO members in 1981.

The group fled to Iraq in 1986, where it was protected by Saddam Hussein and where it helped the Iraqi dictator suppress Shiite and Kurd uprisings in the country.

The terrorist group joined Saddam's army during the Iraqi imposed war on Iran (1980-1988) and helped Saddam and killed thousands of Iranian civilians and soldiers during the US-backed Iraqi imposed war on Iran.

Since the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, the group, which now adheres to a pro-free-market philosophy, has been strongly backed by neo-conservatives in the United States, who also argue for the MKO to be taken off the US terror list.

The MKO has been in Iraq's Diyala province since the 1980s.