Iran has held its long standing rival Israel and US responsible for the assasnation of Iran’s top nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, who was targeted while he was travelling in a car near Absard city in Tehran province’s eastern Damavand county. As WION reported, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said there were “serious indications of an Israeli role” in his assassination. “Terrorists murdered an eminent Iranian scientist today,” Zarif tweeted.”This cowardice — with serious indications of Israeli role — shows desperate warmongering of perpetrators,” he added. He also called on the international community to “end their shameful double standards & condemn this act of state terror.”
According to one of the country’s local television reporters, a pickup truck carrying explosives hidden under a pile of wood exploded in front of Fakhrizadeh’s car while a SUV shooted bullets at it from another lane. Images from the crime scene were found consistent with the report where a black sedan can be seen on the side of the road, its windshield pockmarked with bullet holes and a pool of blood on the asphalt.
According to a report in WION, state television described Fakhrizadeh as one of the country’s nuclear scientists and said Israel had an old and deep enmity towards him.
The United States had slapped sanctions on Fakhrizadeh in 2008 for engaging in activities and transactions that contributed to the development of Iran’s nuclear programme and this assasination has now come less than two months before the President elect of US – Joe Biden takes office as the new President. Biden has promised a return to diplomacy with Iran after four hawkish years under US President Donald Trump, who withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal in 2018 and began reimposing crippling sanctions.