AP: Britain believes Iran’s Revolutionary Guard is supplying explosive technology that is killing British soldiers in Iraq, including eight who died in separate bombings over the summer, a senior British government official said Wednesday. Tehran rejected the allegation. Associated Press
LONDON – Britain believes Iran’s Revolutionary Guard is supplying explosive technology that is killing British soldiers in Iraq, including eight who died in separate bombings over the summer, a senior British government official said Wednesday. Tehran rejected the allegation.
Britain’s Press Association reported that the official said there was evidence Iran was in contact with Sunni Muslim insurgent groups battling coalition troops in Iraq.
The official, addressing reporters on condition of anonymity, did not specify whether the alleged Iranian technology was also responsible for the deaths of U.S. soldiers, according to the agency.
He reportedly said Britain believed the guard had given insurgents the technology, originally obtained from the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah, used in a series of deadly attacks on British troops in southern Iraq over the summer. The soldiers were killed by powerful roadside bombs capable of punching through armoured vehicles.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry dismissed the accusations.
“It’s better they provide their evidence if they have any,” ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi said in Tehran, according to the official Islamic Republic News Agency. “It’s clear that they don’t have any evidence. They accuse others while they are the source of insecurity, instability and crisis in Iraq.”
The British official said Tehran could be trying to warn Britain off its demands that Iran abandon its nuclear program. “It would not be outside the policy parameters of Tehran,” he said, according to Press Association.
He declined to comment on whether Britain believes the Revolutionary Guard was acting independently or on the Iranian government’s orders.
The Revolutionary Guard is a military organization separate from the regular armed forces. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who was inaugurated earlier this month, is a former commander in the Guards.
The official said that Saddam Hussein’s trial, due to begin Oct. 19, could be delayed until after the elections because logistics like bulletproof screens and witness protection programs were not yet ready.
“I think there are some logistical problems. There are a lot of things they haven’t got round to yet,” the official said.