Lebanon News

Iran renews Israel accusation over missing diplomats

Iranian ambassador to Lebanon Mohammad Fathali, center, speaks during a news conference at the Iranian Embassy in Beirut, Friday, July 11, 2014. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)

BEIRUT: Iran’s ambassador in Lebanon marked the 32nd anniversary Friday of the disappearance of four Iranian diplomats , reiterating accusations that they were taken to Israel at the height of its 1982 invasion of Lebanon.

“The kidnapping of the Iranian diplomats is a big crime, a violation of human rights and breach of international norms and treaties which grant foreign envoys immunity and protection,” Mohammad Fathali told a news conference.

Fathali renewed Iran's charge that Israel was involved in the disappearance, saying “they were seized in Lebanon but handed over to Israel where their traces have been lost.”

“Their cause will remain vivid in us because it is a cause of freedom against the sole enemy of the (Muslim) nation that is presently waging a barbaric aggression against our people in Palestine,” the envoy added.

The Iranian diplomats disappeared in Lebanon during Israel’s invasion. Their fate was never determined, and it is presumed they are dead.

Iran has accused Israel of kidnapping and holding them in Israeli jails, and called on the International Committee of the Red Cross to investigate their whereabouts.

Israel has said it does not know what happened to the diplomats and that it believes that they were kidnapped by a Lebanese militant group and executed shortly after their abduction.





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