Larijani blames Israel, US for death of Iran physicist

Iranian parliament speaker calls drive-by shooting a "terrorist US-Israeli action"; despite reports, Iran denies Rezai was a nuclear scientist.

July 24, 2011 12:43
1 minute read.

Larijani 311. (photo credit: Munich Security conference)


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A senior Iranian official on Sunday blamed the United States and Israel for the assassination of an Iranian scientist, the semi-official Fars news agency reported.

Despite earlier reports saying that Darioush Rezaie, 35, was a nuclear scientist, Iranian state television on Sunday said he was a masters student studying electronics at Khajeh University in Tehran and was working for the defense ministry, according to an al Jazeera report. 

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'Iran globally recruiting scientists for nuclear program'

Rezaie was shot dead by a motorcyclist in Tehran on Saturday. The student news agency ISNA quoted an unnamed police official as saying Rezaie was a nuclear scientist but Deputy Interior Minister Safarali Baratlou said this was not certain.

Speaking to Iran's parliament Sunday, the legislative body's speaker Ali Larijani said, "The terrorist US-Israeli action yesterday, which targeted one of the country's scientific elites, is another example of the level of the US animosity (against Iran)."

Iran's security apparatus is investigating the assassination, but no arrests have been reported.

Larijani also blamed "American adventurism" for the deaths on Friday of a senior commander of the elite Revolutionary Guards corps and five others in a landmine explosion on a road.

"The Americans who regard such measures in their so-called world management as permissible should think well about the consequences," Larijani said.

There has been no claim of responsibility for Rezaie's killing. Several nuclear scientists have been assassinated in Iran in the last few years. One scientist was killed and another wounded in Tehran in November.

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