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Denmark accuses Tehran of plotting 'attack' on its soil

Iran's ambassador to Copenhagen was summoned to the foreign ministry [AFP]

Date of publication: 30 October, 2018

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Tehran was accused of plotting an attack against three Iranians living in Denmark on Tuesday.

Denmark's intelligence service PET accused Tehran of plotting an attack against three Iranians living in the Scandinavian country on Tuesday, in response to a deadly attack in Iran in late September.

"It was an operation by the Iranian intelligence service which, we believe, was planning an attack in Denmark" against three Iranians suspected of belonging to the Arab Struggle Movement for the Liberation of Ahvaz, PET chief Finn Borch Andersen told reporters.

A Norwegian of Iranian origin was arrested on October 21 and placed in custody, suspected of planning the attack and spying for Iran.

The suspect was detained in Sweden, according to the Swedish security service Sapo.

At the end of September, Tehran had accused Denmark, the Netherlands and Britain of "hosting several members of the terrorist group" that Iran accuses of being responsible for an attack in the mainly ethnic Arab city of Ahvaz in southwestern Iran.

“It is not acceptable that these groups are not listed as terrorist organisations by the European Union as long as they have not carried out a terrorist attack in Europe,” foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi was quoted as saying by IRNA.

The September 22 attack, in which five commandos opened fire on a military parade, left 24 people dead.

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in a tweet that the attack near the Iraqi border was carried out by "terrorists recruited, trained, armed & paid by a foreign regime".

"Iran holds regional terror sponsors and their US masters accountable for such attacks," he wrote.

The so-called Islamic State group and a separatist Arab group claimed responsibility for the attack.

Tehran's operation in Denmark was "completely unacceptable", Danish Foreign Minister Anders Samuelsen wrote on Twitter. 

"The government will respond to Iran and speak to its European partners about further measures," he added.

Iran's ambassador to Copenhagen was summoned to the foreign ministry for an explanation on Tuesday.

PET's announcement ends weeks of media speculation about why Denmark shut down bridges to Sweden and ferries for several hours on September 28 in a massive manhunt that mobilised hundreds of police and the military. 

The shutdown was aimed at preventing the Iranian operation, PET acknowledged on Tuesday.

Agencies contributed to this report.

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