TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iran’s Foreign Ministry condemned an attack in Tajikistan that killed four foreign tourists, strongly denying accusation of having a role in the brutal attack.
In comments on Tuesday, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi said Iran condemns any terrorist activity in any part of the world, including the recent attack on tourists in Tajikistan.
He also dismissed a statement from Tajikistan’s interior ministry that claims Iran had a role in training perpetrators of the attack, saying, “The Islamic Republic of Iran strongly denies any connection with this incident or the existence of any base on its soil for training acts of sabotage.”
Voicing Iran’s readiness to help Tajik officials in their investigations into the murders, Qassemi said baseless allegations would be detrimental to the brotherly ties between Iran and Tajikistan.
He expressed the hope that Tehran and Dushanbe would boost interaction and prevent the enemies from damaging their relations by raising such accusations.
Tajikistan has blamed the Islamic Renaissance Party for being behind the attack that killed four tourists from the US, Switzerland and the Netherlands.
In a statement on Tuesday, the Tajik interior ministry said it had detained four more suspects and blamed the Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan (IRPT) for the attack, alleging that the attackers’ leader had been trained in Iran and the group planned to flee to Afghanistan after the attack.
In an interview with Reuters, IRPT leader-in-exile Muhiddin Kabiri said, “We completely deny the illogical allegation by the interior ministry and condemn this terrorist act… This (statement) draws the attention away from the real criminals.”
New footage has emerged that appears to show four western cyclists killed in Tajikistan were the victims of a deliberate attack that began with them being forced off the road and ended in an assault with knives and guns.
The deaths of the four people were originally reported as a hit-and-run incident that occurred on Sunday about 150 miles south of the capital, Dushanbe.