Iran Rejects G7 Allegations, Calls Them “Baseless”
Tehran has rejected on Saturday what it describes as “baseless” G7 allegations while accusing Tel Aviv of engaging in a conspiracy in a bid to undermine Iran. It’s worth mentioning that Iran’s antagonistic response came after the G7 accused Tehran of having links to the July 29 attacks on MT, Mercer Street, an oil products tanker managed by a firm owned by an Israeli billionaire.
“We strongly condemn the baseless statement by the foreign ministers of the G7 and the European Union’s high representative for foreign affairs in which they have directed baseless accusations at the Islamic Republic of Iran,” foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said in a statement.
The allegations and the attacks are scenarios manufactured by the Zionists with “notable timing”, he said, as they came before President Ebrahim Raisi took the oath of office.
On Friday, the G7 countries have called on Iran to halt its provocative action and to respect relevant UN resolutions. Moreover, the group stated that Iran’s actions, including its support for proxies in the region, pose a threat to the international community.
Yair Lapid, the Israeli Foreign Minister, has praised the G7 statement, claiming that Tehran is behind multiple terror attacks in the region.
“Iran isn’t just an Israeli problem, it’s a global problem. It’s time for the world to hold the Iranian regime to account,” Lapid said.
Likewise, the Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz called US President Joe Biden and thanked him for what he described as an “efficient American leadership”.
It’s noteworthy that the G7 statement came after pressures from the US because Japan despite being an owner of the tank, refused to condemn Iran’s attacks. Tokyo was reluctant to lose its economic ties with Tehran.
From friends to foes
Despite the latest escalation, Tel Aviv and Tehran were once strong allies. Iran is among the first countries to recognize the state of Israel. The Shah regime (the 1950s) in Iran adopted a pro-Israeli foreign policy, as both states aimed to curb the spread of Pan-Arabism in the Middle East region (MENA).
The birth of the 1979 revolution altered this close connection, yet the strategic interests of both states intersected. The Iran-Iraq war prompted Israel to provide Tehran with military assistance. As a country that prioritizes national security over other matters, sidelining ideological conflicts, it had with Iran, it was necessary to curb the influence of Iraq.
Nevertheless, the end of the cold war marked the onset of a prolonged conflict between Tehran and Tel Aviv. To elaborate, the collapse of the Soviet Union and the defeat of Saddam Hussein in 1991 eliminated the two main foes for Israel and Tehran. In other words, there were no reasons to resume relations.
At the same time, Israel started to develop relations with the Arab states, and the only country that seemed to challenge Israeli superiority in the region was Iran.
Nora Maher, Professor at the British University in Egypt, argues that the onset of the Arab Spring, in addition to the rise of Iran in the MENA region, paved the way for better relations between the Arab countries and Israel to counter the so-called Iranian threat.
“The spread of Iranian influence in the region has strengthened Israel’s security, and fostered an unprecedented open rapprochement with the Gulf regimes,” writes Maher.
“The challenge for Israel, however, lies in how to continue exporting Iran’s scarecrow to the Gulf States while at the same time encircle Iran’s influence and near-border nuclear and missile activities, therefore, keeping the Iranian threat” at a distance from the Israeli borders,” Maher added.