Iran’s former defense minister and current military advisor to Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei says the recent deadly explosion in Beirut was “100 percent an Israeli job” meant to pit the Lebanese nation against Hezbollah and disarm the resistance movement.
In an interview with China’s Phoenix Television broadcast on Sunday, Hossein Dehqan stressed that nothing is expected from the Tel Aviv regime other than crime.
Asked about the August 4 blast in Beirut, Dehghan replied, “I think what happened is 100 percent an Israeli job” as it targeted food stocks.
“What is the message when you destroy the lifeline of a crisis-hit country that already has problems in this regard, except to put pressure on the people to create room for another purpose? In my opinion, this is 100 percent an Israeli job,” he added.
Dehqan also said that when the Israelis do something, they quickly make up a story to divert attention from it.
“For example, it is said that Hezbollah and the resistance are the cause of all problems of the Lebanese nation and that these explosives belonged to them. This is while the Lebanese nation considers Hezbollah as part of themselves and Hezbollah serves their security interests. Hezbollah has never acted against the Lebanese people,” he noted.
He further said Israel's goal is “to rally the Lebanese nation against Hezbollah and eventually disarm it.”
Almost 180 people are so far confirmed to have lost their lives, while more than 6,000 others were wounded in the powerful explosion that ripped through the Beirut port.
The blast took place in Beirut port warehouses storing highly explosive material, specifically ammonium nitrate, commonly used in both fertilizer and bombs.
The blast — one of the biggest non-nuclear explosions the world has ever seen — flattened much of the strategic port and left buildings in ruin.
Fears grow about West's meddling in blast probe
On Saturday, France sent a helicopter carrier and forensic police to Beirut to investigate the incident.
Additionally, a senior US official said a team of FBI investigators is due to arrive in Lebanon this weekend to take part at the investigation into the explosion.
“We really need to make sure that there is a thorough, a transparent and credible investigation. I know that is what everyone is demanding,” David Hale, US undersecretary of state for political affairs, said after visiting the site of the blast.
This is while top Lebanese officials, including President Michel Aoun, have rejected calls for outside interference, describing it as “a waste of time” that would be politicized.
On Friday, Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah emphasized that he did not trust any foreign investigation, in a clear reference to the FBI plan.
The cause of the explosion is still unclear and that any international probe would also have to clear Israel of any responsibility in the port explosion, he said.
President Aoun has said the blast might have been triggered by a foreign attack.
“The cause has not been determined yet. There is a possibility of external interference through a rocket or bomb or other act,” he said after the incident.
Aoun said he had asked French President Emmanuel Macron “to secure aerial images to determine what happened and if the French do not have them, we will request them from another source."
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