02:32 GMT24 January 2021
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    Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, a top Iranian scientist and the man deemed to be one of the developers of Iran's nuclear programme, was assassinated outside Tehran on 27 November, with the Islamic Republic pointing the finger of blame at Israel and vowing to avenge his death although Tel Aviv has never confirmed the accusations.

    Iran's Minister of Defense has revealed that there is "serious evidence" allegedly pointing to the “direct involvement” of Israel in the November 2020 assassination of leading Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, Iranian media outlets have reported.

    Brigadier-General Amir Hatami addressed a letter to fellow defence ministers in more than 60 countries on Wednesday, highlighting that Dr Fakhrizadeh, Deputy Minister of Defense and Head of the Research and Innovation Organization of the Ministry of Defense of Iran, had been yet another victim in the 'targeted killings' of Iranian scientists ostensibly by Israel’s espionage services.

    Servants of the holy shrine of Imam Reza carry the coffin of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, in Mashhad, Iran November 29, 2020.
    © REUTERS / WANA NEWS AGENCY
    Servants of the holy shrine of Imam Reza carry the coffin of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, in Mashhad, Iran November 29, 2020.

    As he praised the major scientific achievements and research projects conducted by Fakhrizadeh, Hatami was cited as urging the need for setting aside double standards in the international approach towards state terrorism.

    The defense minister also warned that Iran reserves the right to retaliate to the assassination, as he deplored the ‘muted’ global response to “this inhuman, illegitimate and criminal act”.

    He voiced the opinion that further silence regarding the assassination would only serve to fuel global insecurity.

    A view shows the site of the attack that killed Prominent Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, outside Tehran, Iran, November 27, 2020.
    WANA NEWS AGENCY
    A view shows the site of the attack that killed Prominent Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, outside Tehran, Iran, November 27, 2020.

    Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was assassinated in a multi-pronged terrorist attack in a small city east of Tehran on 27 November 2020.

    ​The Islamic Republic was swift to blame Israel for the assassination, claiming it was in Tel Aviv's interests to eliminate the Iranian nuclear scientist who was believed to be playing a crucial role in building the country's atomic reactors.

    Tel Aviv has neither confirmed nor denied the accusations.

    Meanwhile, Tehran vowed that "definitive punishment" would reach offenders "at the right time".

    In a message shortly after the incident, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei called to “investigate this crime and firmly prosecute its perpetrators and its commanders”.

    Fakhrizadeh was the only Iranian scientist whose name was openly mentioned by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a 2018 televised presentation.

    A view shows the scene of the attack that killed Prominent Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, outside Tehran, Iran, November 27, 2020.
    WANA NEWS AGENCY
    A view shows the scene of the attack that killed Prominent Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, outside Tehran, Iran, November 27, 2020.

    Netanyahu had claimed at the time that Israel had came across confidential documents that showed that Fakhrizadeh was secretly continuing work on Iran’s ‘covert’ nuclear programme, adding “remember that name.”

    Iran’s government has repeatedly insisted that the project was shut down in 2003 and all nuclear research and activity is for peaceful purposes.

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    Iranian Intelligence Found Clues About Nuclear Physicist's Assassination, Reports Suggest
    Iran Rejects Israeli Accusations of Seeking Nuclear Weapons Amid Uranium Enrichment Boost
    Tags:
    Amir Hatami, Benjamin Netanyahu, iran, Iran
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