Iran reserves right to defend itself against terrorist attacks: envoy

July 31, 2011

TEHRAN – Iranian ambassador to Baghdad Hassan Danaiifar has said that the Islamic Republic of Iran reserves the right to defend itself against terrorist acts carried out by the counter-revolutionary group PJAK (the Party for a Free Life in Kurdistan) in northwestern Iran.

Ambassador Danaiifar made the remarks in response to Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, who demanded on Wednesday that Iran stop shelling positions of Kurdish rebels inside Iraq.
“We again demand that the Iranian government stop its continuing shelling” of PJAK’s positions “because this is not constructive for Iraq-Iranian relations and damages ties,” AFP quoted Zebari as saying.
The Iranian diplomat said, “Iran regards adoption of defensive measures to protect its territory and citizens against armed attacks as its legal right.”
He also said that the Iranian Foreign Ministry, in a letter to the Iraqi Foreign Ministry, had protested the Iraq-based terrorist groups’ activities and operations against Iran.
“But the Iraqi Foreign Ministry has not responded to the letter yet,” he said. “The central government of Iraq has been informed about the Islamic Republic’s stance (in this regard).”
Islamic Revolution Guards Corps forces have launched a major offensive against PJAK since mid-July after a high-ranking Iranian military official criticized Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government for failing to halt PJAK terrorists’ activities in Iraq.
On Wednesday, an Iranian commander said IRGC forces have killed about 50 PJAK terrorists in northwestern Iran over the past few weeks.
The IRGC commander also said operations against PJAK will continue until Iraqi forces deal with the group