US denies role in Iranian scientist's death

2012-01-12 08:34

kalahari.com

Washington - The United States denied any role in Wednesday's killing of an Iranian nuclear scientist, the latest in a series of events that have exacerbated tensions with Iran.

The assassination of Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan was the latest in a year that has already seen new US economic sanctions, threats to bar American ships from the Persian Gulf, an Iranian death sentence to a jailed US citizen and an escalation in Tehran's uranium enrichment program.

Iranian reports said two assailants on a motorcycle attached a magnetic bomb to Roshan's car, killing him and his driver. Roshan was a chemistry expert and director of the Natanz uranium enrichment facility in central Iran, and the slaying suggested a widening covert effort to set back the Islamic republic's atomic program.

But US officials said they had nothing to do with it.

"I want to categorically deny any United States involvement in any kind of act of violence inside Iran," Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton told reporters.

 "We believe there has to be an understanding between Iran, its neighbours and the international community that finds a way forward for it to end its provocative behaviour, end its search for nuclear weapons and rejoin the international community and be a productive member of it."

Earlier, State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland wouldn't answer a question about whether Washington was involved in the killing — or if the administration viewed Roshan as an innocent victim. "I'm not going to speak to who may or may not have done this," she told reporters.

The attack also came one day after Israeli military chief Lieutenant  General Benny Gantz was quoted as telling a parliamentary committee that 2012 would be critical for Iran — in part because of "things that happen to it unnaturally".

And other Israeli officials, hinted at covert campaigns against Iran without directly admitting involvement.

"Many bad things have been happening to Iran in the recent period," said Mickey Segal, a former director of the Israeli military's Iranian intelligence department. "Iran is in a situation where pressure on it is mounting, and the latest assassination joins the pressure that the Iranian regime is facing."

Iranian authorities blamed Israel.

One former official said the magnetic-bomb attack does bear the hallmarks of an Israeli hit. Current and former US officials say Washington prefers proxies like Israel to carry out operations inside Iran, and that up until two years ago, the US and Israel coordinated actions against Iran closely. But the officials say the White House halted such cooperation after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu took power.

The officials, past and present, spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive strategic negotiations.

- AP

Read more on:    us  |  iran  |  nuclear

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
79 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

Zuma: Pray for peaceful polls

President Jacob Zuma has asked members of the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God to pray for peaceful elections on 7 May.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Friday Grabouw - 11:32 AM
    Road name: N2 Eastbound
    DELAYS between Sir Lowrys Pass and Grabouw
  • Friday Cape Town - 10:14 AM
    Road name: M3 Inbound
    EVENT - left lane closed between Rhodes Avenue and UCT
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Samsung Galaxy Y

The Samsung Y (Young) is tiny but powerful with Android...

From R1499.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may find yourself putting in that extra effort on looking good and making an impression. ...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.