The head of the Intelligence Organization of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) has revealed that as many as 20 foreign intelligence agencies played an active role in last year's Western-backed riots in Iran.
Brigadier General Mohammad Kazemi made the statement in an exclusive interview with the official website of Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei published on Monday as he expounded on the various aspects of the violent riots triggered by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in September last year.
Kazemi said the riots broke out after American authorities realized that their foreign policies towards Iran had failed after President Joe Biden took office, and that they needed to ramp up the Trump-era’s so-called pressure campaign against the Islamic Republic.
“After the Biden administration came to power, the Americans reached this strategic conclusion that they had faced failure in many foreign cases, and the reason for that was the actions of Iran and the management of its Leader; these failures had caused America's international position to be overshadowed; so, Iran must pay the price,” Kazemi said in the interview.
“Therefore, they moved towards rewriting Trump's version of maximum pressure ... under the strategy of containing and limiting the Islamic Republic,” he added.
Kazemi said US officials devised three steps in order for the riots to continue, which included the creation of an emotional atmosphere after Amini's death, changing protest into unrest through daily strikes and turning the atmosphere of unrest into an armed movement by activating armed groups.
He added that investigations by the IRGC’s Intelligence Organization exposed the role and involvement of the intelligence services of nearly 20 countries in the last year riots.
He named more than a dozen countries that have been active in this regard, including the United States, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, France, Germany, Canada and Bahrain. He also noted that the occupying Zionist regime was also involved.
The head of the IRGC’s Intelligence Organization also provided a list of some of the activities undertaken by foreign intelligence services during the riots.
1. Movements by French diplomats in Tehran to gather field information on the riots and the state of Iran’s security and law enforcement apparatus and exchanging the information with an intelligence officer of a European country's embassy.
2. Attempts by the Zionist regime of Israel to raise a fund to support rioters and protesters through the initiative and financing by the United States and other countries.
3. A meeting of the ambassadors of 28 European countries at the site of a European embassy to discuss the possibility of closing European embassies, with a focus on Germany.
4. The use of non-European nationals (Afghans, Pakistanis, Iraqis) and the presence of European nationals to gather information on the riots, which led to the arrest of 40 individuals from one neighboring country, a French-Irish national in Khorasan Razavi Province, and a German national in Ardabil Province.
5. Intensification of activities and support by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in creating necessary cyberspace platforms for disseminating news of the riots, including efforts to send technical equipment, escape tools, and lifting sanctions on mobile communication devices.
6. A request by the CIA to establish a joint team with the Israeli regime’s Mossad and Britain’s MI6 to reactivate the project of assassinating Iranian scientists, especially in the nuclear, space, and military fields towards the end of the riots.
7. Joint periodic meetings of the intelligence services of the United Arab Emirates and the Zionist regime in an Arab country to support the riots in Iran.
Kazemi also stressed in his interview that the enemy sought to stoke mistrust among Iranian people from various social strata and political inclinations by such ploys as inducing discrimination and violation of women's rights, as well as the collapse of the Islamic Republic and the end of the Islamic Revolution.
Foreign-backed riots broke out in Iran in mid-September after the death of the 22-year-old Iranian woman of Kurdish descent. She fainted at a police station in the capital Tehran and was pronounced dead three days later at the hospital. An official report by Iran’s Legal Medicine Organization concluded that Amini’s death was caused by illness rather than alleged blows to the head or other vital body organs.
Iran’s intelligence community said several countries, including the United States and the United Kingdom, had used their spy and propaganda apparatuses to provoke violent riots in the country.
Rioters went on a rampage, brutally attacking security officers and causing massive damage to public property.
On February 5, the Leader of the Islamic Revolution pardoned or commuted the sentences of a large number of Iranian prisoners who had been arrested during the riots.
Ayatollah Khamenei issued the amnesty on the occasion of the 44th anniversary of the glorious victory of the Islamic Revolution, which put an end to the ruling of the US-backed Pahlavi regime in the country in 1979, and the birthday anniversary of the first Shia Imam, Imam Ali (AS).
The Leader’s amnesty covered all but murderers and terrorists.