Baku, Azerbaijan, Jan. 4
By Khalid Kazimov – Trend:
Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, chairman of the Expediency Council, an advisory body for Iran’s supreme leader, has condemned those who stormed Saudi embassy in Tehran and that country’s consulate in the city of Mashhad after execution of a prominent Shia cleric, Nimr al-Nimr by Saudi Arabia.
Earlier on Jan. 2, Saudi Arabia executed Nimr al-Nimr on terrorism charges, followed by a strong protest from Iran, which said the execution was unjustified.
Reacting to al-Nimr’s execution, angry Iranian protesters stormed Saudi embassy in Tehran on Jan. 3, smashing furniture and setting fire to the building before being dispersed by police.
Rafsanjani, further calling on all Islamic countries to cooperate to end hostilities, bloodshed and tensions in the Islamic world, said that storming diplomatic premises will escalate tensions in the region, ISNA news agency reported Jan. 3.
Expressing deep sorrow over Nimr’s death, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani too criticized protestors who stormed the Saudi embassy and consulate.
Meanwhile, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei slammed Saudi officials and said no doubt that a “divine vengeance” will afflict Saudi politicians.
Following the protests, Saudi Arabia said it severed diplomatic ties with Iran and urged the Islamic Republic’s diplomatic mission and related entities to leave the country within 48 hours.
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