Iranian judiciary, fm delegation to survey Majed’s death cause in Lebanon

Tehran, Jan 6, IRNA – A delegation of Iranian Judiciary Force and Foreign Ministry officials will visit Lebanon soon to attend autopsy of Saudi terrorist leader Majed al-Majed and more precisely survey his death cause, an Iranian deputy foreign minister said on Monday.

Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir-Abdollahian announced the news on Monday night in Tehran’s Nour Mosque on the sidelines of a commemoration service for the wife of the Palestinian Ambassador to Iran Salah Zawawi.

Al-Majed was the Saudi commander of the terrorist Abdullah Azzam Brigades, an al-Qaeda offshoot that operates throughout the Middle East.

The group is responsible for the twin bomb attacks against the Iranian Embassy in the Lebanese capital city, Beirut, on November 19 which killed 25 people and injured more than 150.

Iran’s Cultural Attaché to Beirut Hojjatoleslam Ebrahim Ansari and the wife of another Iranian diplomat were among the victims.

On the conditions of the kidnapped Iranian diplomat in Yemen, too, the deputy foreign minister for Arab and African affairs said that he is safe and sound according to the latest information, adding that an Iranian delegation is now in Yemen and negotiating over the issue.

Nour Ahmad Nikbakht was on his way to work from his home in the diplomatic quarter of Sana’a on July 21, when unidentified gunmen blocked the road, forced him out of his vehicle and abducted him.

On the arrival of the Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al-Miqdad in Tehran later tonight (Monday), he said that the visit is aimed at consultations on the upcoming Geneva II International Conference on Syria.

Reacting to the US Secretary of State Johan Kerry’s Sunday talks on Iran’s conditional presence in Geneva II at ministerial level, or unconditional lower level presence as observer, Amir-Abdollahian said, “In the absence of the influential sides in Geneva 2 that gathering will be no more than a TV show.”

The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Monday started sending out invitations to Syria peace conference on January 22, but Iran was not on the first list, a UN spokesman said.

The US Secretary of State John Kerry and the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will meet on January 13 in a bid to decide on whether Iran should take part, said UN deputy spokesman Farhan Haq.

“Iran was not among the first invitations,' Haq said.

'US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will meet on January 13 and we very much hope they will reach agreement on Iran's participation,' he added.

It was not known if the UN-Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi would be at the January 13 meeting.

Russia has pressed for Iran's participation in the bid to end the 34-month-old conflict.

Ban has also spoken out in favor of Iranian involvement, but the United States and a few western governments have opposed a frontline place for Tehran at the meetings in Switzerland.

The January 22 meeting is to help implement a June 2012 Geneva declaration by the major powers, including Russia and the United States, says that a transitional government must be established in Syria.

The United States has said that Iran should not take part in the conference because it has refused to back up the Geneva declaration.