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November 28, 2013 1:03 pm

Iran’s Rafsanjani: Israel Seeking to Make Arabs Forget Number One Enemy

avatar by Joshua Levitt

Former Iranian President and influential cleric Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani. Photo:

Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, chairman of Iran’s Expediency Council, former president and still influential cleric, said on Thursday that Israel is attempting to make Arab countries forget that their number one enemy is the Jewish state, Iran’s semi-official FARS news agency reported.

Rafsanjani’s argument, as presented by FARS, which didn’t quote the Ayatollah directly, was that Israel is fanning the fires of Iranophobia to avoid taking the Islamic Republic’s place as an isolated regime.

To bolster its report, FARS published comments made in August by Mohammad Reza Mohseni Sani, member of the parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission.

Sani said, “The western people’s dissatisfaction and anger at their countries’ high spending for the Zionist regime has endangered the regime seriously. So, they naturally utter such protests and threats and raise baseless claims like their allegations about Iran’s efforts to acquire atomic weapons in a bid to promote Iranophobia to divert the public opinion to some unreal issues and continue their illegitimate life and use of the Western assistance.”

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FARS presented the country’s case for nuclear capability for energy purposes only, ignoring the question raised by the International Atomic Energy Agency of why the country would otherwise need the ability to enrich uranium to the levels needed for a nuclear warhead.

FARS wrote, “Israel, Washington and their western allies accuse Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian nuclear program, while they have never presented any corroborative evidence to substantiate their allegations. Iran denies the charges and insists that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only. Tehran stresses that the country has always pursued a civilian path to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population, whose fossil fuel would eventually run dry.”

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