Iran’s diplomatic spokesperson denied media reports that, according to U.S. officials, “the Iranian government is weighing an assassination attempt against the American ambassador to South Africa” in retaliation for the U.S. killing of Quds Force Commander Qassem Soleimani in January 2020. The spokesperson contended that “it was predictable that the U.S. regime would resort to anti-Iran accusations and falsification ahead of the U.S. presidential election, coupled with that regime’s pressures to abuse the United Nations Security Council’s mechanisms”. “Iran will press on with international legal action at all levels in connection with the criminal and cowardly assassination of General Soleimani, and will neither forgive nor forget the act of terrorism”, he added. President Trump subsequently warned that “any attack by Iran, in any form, against the U.S. will be met with an attack on Iran that will be 1,000 times greater in magnitude!” An Iranian spokesperson reacted: “we hope that the U.S. would not commit another strategic mistake and certainly, if that happens, Iran will give an appropriate response”. On 18 September, the South African government stated that “at present, the information provided [by U.S. officials] is not sufficient to sustain the allegation that there is a credible threat against the U.S. ambassador to South Africa”.
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