Iran says US claim of plot has 'no legal logic'

AP News
Posted: Oct 15, 2011 4:53 PM
Iran says US claim of plot has 'no legal logic'

Iran's Foreign Ministry dismissed U.S. accusations that Tehran was involved in a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in Washington, saying Saturday the claims had no "legal logic."

The ministry said in a statement on the state news agency that the Iranian government has no connection to Manssor Arbabsiar, the man arrested in the alleged plot. It derided the claims, saying U.S. officials have put forward no proof.

"Unilaterally announcing accusations without showing documentation and creating a media wave against Iran is in no way compatible with legal logic, and can only be a purely media and political show," it said.

It said the accusations were "put together based on statements, guesses and suppositions by individuals involved in drug smuggling" would never stand up in a "proper, neutral courtroom."

President Barack Obama said Thursday that the U.S. will be able to support all of its allegations that Iran was directly involved in a plot to kill the Saudi ambassador to the United States, Adel Al-Jubeir. Two men, including a member of Iran's Quds Force special foreign actions unit, were charged in New York federal court on Tuesday in the plot.

Arbabsiar is a 56-year-old naturalized U.S. citizen who also had an Iranian passport. In May 2011, the criminal complaint says, he approached someone he believed to be a member of the vicious Mexican narco-terror group, Los Zetas, for help with an attack on a Saudi embassy. The man he approached turned out to be an informant for U.S. drug agents, it says.

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The government charges that Arbabsiar had been told by his cousin Abdul Reza Shahlai, a high-ranking member of the Quds Force, to recruit a drug trafficker because drug gangs have a reputation for assassinations.