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11/04/15

Iran ex-envoy to Lebanon may have been kidnapped, his brother says

Source: Press TV

Iran's former Ambassador to Lebanon Ghazanfar Roknabadi, who has been missing since a crush during Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia, may have been kidnapped, his brother tells Press TV.


Former Iranian Ambassador to Lebanon Ghazanfar Roknabadi (file photo)

In a Thursday interview with Press TV, Ahmad Roknabadi referred to the 2013 twin bombings outside the Iranian Embassy in the Lebanese capital, Beirut, saying that Saudi citizens and people linked to Daesh terrorist group were behind the explosions.

"So all these [incidents] have made us very worried that this... happening in Saudi Arabia may be related to all those [that] happened before to him, and maybe he has been kidnapped in Saudi Arabia," Roknabadi said, speaking about his brother.

More than two dozen people, including Iran's cultural attache to Beirut, were killed and at least 150 others injured in November 2013 when two explosions struck near the Iranian Embassy in southern Beirut.

Following the incident, the so-called Abdullah Azzam Brigades claimed responsibility for the bombings. The group's Saudi leader, Majid al-Majid, was arrested in early January 2014 and died days later from poor health in a Lebanese jail. Majid was a high-profile terrorist also wanted by the US and some other countries.

Elsewhere in the interview, Roknabadi held Saudi officials accountable for the tragic incident in Mina.

Also on Thursday, a senior Iranian diplomat said Tehran is following up on the fate of the former Iranian ambassador through international bodies.

On the international level, the case is being pursued through the United Nations (UN) and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir-Abdollahian told IRNA.

Saudi Arabia claims nearly 770 people were killed in the September 24 crush in Mina, but officials at Iran's Hajj and Pilgrimage Organization say about 4,700 people, including 464 Iranian pilgrims, lost their lives in the incident.

Some 28 Iranians are still missing.

... Payvand News - 11/04/15 ... --



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