Iran will recognize the armies of the European countries operating in the region as terrorist organizations, Iranian Parliament Speaker Mohammad Baqer Ghalibaf said Sunday, the semi-official Tasnim News Agency reported.
“We identify the armies of European countries in the region as terrorist groups and organizations, and we will take the necessary measures to deal with them,” he was quoted as saying during a meeting of the country’s legislature.
Iranian lawmakers vote in response to IRGC vote in Europe
His announcement comes on the heels of a vote taken by the European Parliament last week to designate Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), the main branch of Iran’s armed forces, as a terrorist organization. The vote passed with the overwhelming majority of 598 in favor and nine opposed.
The decision to recognize the IRGC as a terrorist group has previously been made by the US, Israel, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. The UK was set to join them, the Telegraph reported earlier this month.
Among the countries that have made the decision to classify the IRGC as a terrorist organization, Ghalibaf singled out Israel as Iran’s primary opponent in the matter.
“The European Parliament’s decision to include the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps in the terrorist list showed that the pro-Zionist front has made the European countries make serious miscalculations,” he said.
Iran stranded diplomatically amid ongoing protests
Relations between Iran and European nations have worsened as the regime in Tehran was accused of committing numerous human-rights violations, including torture and execution of anti-regime protesters.
The regime executed former deputy defense minister Alireza Akbari, a dual Iranian-British citizen, earlier this month. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said the execution was “callous and cowardly.”
The anti-regime protests, which began last September after the “morality police” killed Mahsa Amini, have continued. Amini was a young woman who was beaten to death for wearing her hijab improperly. Within 120 days of the protests, Iran had killed more than 500 people.
The Iranian regime sponsors terrorist groups throughout the region, including Hamas and Hezbollah.
“I really hope that Europe can free itself from the influence of the child-killing Zionist regime and adopt a more rational policy.”Mohammad Baqer Ghalibaf
“I really hope that Europe can free itself from the influence of the child-killing Zionist regime and adopt a more rational policy,” Ghalibaf said.
Iran would use the tools at its disposal to take necessary countermeasures against the militaries of the countries that it labels as terrorist groups, he said, without specifying what those countermeasures would be.
Zina Rakhamilova contributed to this report.