Antwerp, Belgium (AP)-Iranian diplomat suspected of masterminding the blockage of a bomb attack on an Iranian opposition group exiled in France did not appear in court on Friday, the first day of a trial on suspicion of terrorism in Belgium. It was.
More than two years after the cross-border police operation that stopped the attack, Assadollah Assadi and three other suspects were charged with “attempted terrorist murder and participation in terrorist group activities” for five to twenty years. Facing imprisonment.
Minutes before the trial began in the city of Antwerp, plaintiffs’ attorneys and representatives of the Mujahideen Hulk Opposition Group (MEK) did not provide evidence that the detained Asadi was ordered by Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad. Insisted. Zarif does not attend.
Plaintiffs believe that Asadi organized the plan based on orders from the highest authorities in Iran.
“The Iranian state is plotting, threatening, attacking and executing the death penalty,” said attorney Georges Henri Beautier. “We have irrefutable evidence that the Iranian state has issued orders from Tehran and endorsed the deaths of thousands of people.”
On June 30, 2018, Belgian police officers provided information on a possible attack on MEK’s annual meeting and stopped a couple traveling in a Mercedes car. In their luggage, 550 grams of unstable TATP explosives and detonators were found.
The Belgian bomb squad said the device was of professional quality. It could have caused a considerable explosion and panic in a crowd of an estimated 25,000 people who gathered that day in the French town of Villepinte, north of Paris.
Considered by investigators as the “operation commander” of the attack, Asadi is suspected of hiring to infiltrate an opposition group a few years ago.
A memo from the Belgian intelligence agency seen by the Associated Press identified Asadi as an officer of the Iranian intelligence and security ministry, which was concealed and operated at the Iranian embassy in Vienna. Belgian national security officials believe he worked in the so-called division 312 of the ministry called the General Directorate for Internal Security on the list of organizations considered terrorists in the European Union.
Asadi’s attorney said his client would challenge all charges against him and raise procedural issues, including issues of his diplomatic immunity.
Plaintiffs’ attorneys argued that diplomatic immunity was not equivalent to “immunity” and asked the court to order Asadi to attend the trial.
The hearing is expected to last two to three days, and the verdict will be submitted by the end of next month or the beginning of next year.
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In the face of terrorist charges, Iranian diplomats skip the first day of the trial
Source link In the face of terrorist charges, Iranian diplomats skip the first day of the trial