Iran urges UN to pursue fate of missing diplomats
Press TV -(Fri Jul 4, 2014) Iran has once again called for the formation of an international fact-finding committee to pursue the fate of four of its diplomats kidnapped in Lebanon more than three decades ago.
In a statement issued on the 32nd anniversary of the abduction of the four diplomats, the Iranian Foreign Ministry renewed its call on UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and relevant international bodies to fulfill their humanitarian duty to investigate the fate of the missing Iranian nationals.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran once again stresses its previous proposal for the establishment of an international fact-finding committee to shed light on the aspects of this incident,” read the statement.
The Foreign Ministry further underlined the role of Israeli-linked agents in kidnapping the Iranian diplomats in the Lebanese territories then occupied by Israel, stressing that the Tel Aviv regime “bears full legal and political responsibility” for the incident.
It also thanked the Lebanese government and some international organizations for their efforts to follow up on the abduction case.
On July 4, 1982, four Iranian diplomats — Ahmad Motevaselian, Seyyed Mohsen Mousavi, Taqi Rastegar Moqaddam and Kazem Akhavan — were kidnapped by a group of Israel-backed gunmen at an inspection point in northern Lebanon.
The Lebanese militia headed by Samir Geagea, which was known for its close ties with Israel at the time of the abduction, was responsible for handing over many Lebanese and foreigners to Israeli custody at the peak of Israel’s invasion of Lebanon.
Geagea has made contradictory statements concerning the Iranian diplomats, initially saying that his militia handed them to Israel and later claiming that they witnessed their killing inside Lebanon.
Lebanon’s resistance movement Hezbollah says the fate of the kidnapped Iranians was brought up in indirect negotiations for a prisoner exchange with the Israeli side after the 2006 war.