Iran Rejects Claim it is Linked to Jordan Terror Suspect

Iran on Tuesday rejected reports by Jordanian state media that a terror suspect arrested in Jordan on suspicion of planning attacks against the kingdom is linked to an Iranian group.

The spokesman for Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard, Gen. Ramazan Sharif, told The Associated Press (AP) that the reports are "baseless."

Jordan's government-owned Al-Rai newspaper had reported on Monday that security forces had also seized 45 kilograms (99 pounds) of high-grade explosives in the suspect’s case and that it was the biggest haul in Jordan a decade.

Al-Rai and the state news agency Petra said the suspect has ties to an Iranian group called Beit al-Maqdis, but did not elaborate.

Sharif dismissed the allegations as part of "phobia and propaganda" against Iran, and compared it to "past claims" by other countries, according to AP.

The precise target of the planned attack was not revealed in Monday’s report, but the Hashemite Kingdom would in theory present a range of targets for the Islamic Republic of Iran. Jordan has good relations with both Israel and the Sunni Arab gulf states – who are sworn enemies of Iran’s regime – and is currently hosting Syrian opposition leaders, including rebels fighting the pro-Iranian Assad regime.

The exposed plot is just the latest in a series of terrorist plots by the Qods Force over the past several years, most of which have focused on Jewish or Israeli targets.

Iranian agents, often working together with Hezbollah terrorists, have attempted to attack Israeli and Jewish targets in Thailand, Georgia, Azerbaijan and India, among other places. Most of the attacks have been foiled in time or were botched by the terrorists, although a bomb attack in Delhi in 2012 injured the wife of an Israel diplomat.

Iran is also suspected of involvement in the deadly 2012 bombing of an Israeli tour bus in Burgas, Bulgaria.

The arrest of the terror suspect came amid concerns in Jordan that groups such as the Islamic State (ISIS) may be planning to carry out attack or invade the Hashemite Kingdom.

Recent reports indicated that Jordan’s King Abdullah II was concerned over a possible ISIS invasion, specifically because that after 3,000 bombing raids by the United States and its allies, ISIS has not been beaten back – and seems only to get stronger.

Last week reports surfaced that Jordan was preparing to create a security zone in southern Syria to fend off a possible jihadist advance across the border, in what would be the first such humanitarian "buffer zone" established in the civil war-torn country.


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