Former Defense Department Official: Shots on Ghassemlou Came from Iranian Delegation

Kurdpa: In a column on Commentary Magazine on the 26th anniversary of Vienna murder, Michael Rubin former Defence Department official accuses Iran of complicity in Vienna Murder.

The July 13, 1989 negotiations between Iranian representatives and Iranian Kurdish delegation led to the murder of Dr. Abdul Rahman Ghassemlou, then the head of the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI), along with a KDPI representative in Europe and an Iraqi Kurdish mediator.

Michael Rubin who had worked as a country director for Iran and Iraq in the Office of the Secretary of Defense under George W. Bush, claims “It’s hard to hide gunshots in the middle of a Vienna apartment building.”

“There had been no forced entry into the apartment, two of the victims were shot as they sat, and each victim had received a coup de grâce to confirm death. Subsequent forensic evidence confirmed the Austrian anti-terrorism unit’s conclusions that the murders were a hit. The shots were fired from the position of the Iranian delegation and not from the door. Shell casing positions also suggested the Iranian delegation’s complicity,” he further wrote.

Austrian police arrived to the scene immediately after the murder, but the Iranian delegation pleaded innocent. After taking statements, the Austrian police released the perpetrators — so long as they promised to make themselves available for further questioning, as necessary. They immediately returned to Tehran.

Arrest warrants were issued only after the accomplices returned back to Iran, and Iran refused to extradite any of the wanted man, “rather, they promoted the team lead. Sahraroudi won his star and became head of the Qods Force intelligence unit. The promotion — as well as the senior level of the Iranian delegation — showed that the assassination was no rogue operation. It was not locally conceived, but rather likely was directed from the top,” Michael further added on the murder.

This former Defense Department official expresses his discontent with the US representatives who were in Vienna negotiating with the same Iranians who orchestrated the murder of Kurdish leaders 26 years ago.

“The head of the Supreme National Security Council at the time, coordinating such activities? One Hassan Rouhani, the man whom President Barack Obama considers his partner. That a deal predicated on the trust of Iran will be struck in Vienna, on the 26th anniversary of one of Iran’s — and, specifically, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s and Hassan Rouhani’s — most brazen hit jobs,” he wrote.

The deal was supposed to be signed on Monday, July 13th, on the day of the Vienna Murder; however, the negotiations were dragged to Tuesday where a deal was finally reached between the clerical Iran and the world powers.

The signing of the deal predicated on the trust of Iran, “illustrates just how much Iran has triumphed by doubling down on intransigence and terrorism and, in contrast, just how unhinged America’s foreign policy has become,” he concludes.

Iran and six major world powers reached a nuclear deal on Tuesday, whereby sanctions imposed by the United States, European Union and United Nations will be lifted in return for Iran agreeing long-term curbs on a nuclear programme that the West has suspected was aimed at creating a nuclear bomb.

Writing by Kurdpa Staff Writers and editing by Hazhir B.

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