ReutersJan 23, 2021 00:16:26 IST
DUBAI (Reuters) – The web site of Iran’s Supreme Chief on Friday carried the picture of a golfer resembling former President Donald Trump apparently being focused by a drone alongside a risk of revenge over the killing of a high Iranian common in a U.S. drone assault.
The picture had first appeared on a Persian-language Twitter feed that carried a hyperlink to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s web site. Twitter took down that feed on Friday, saying it was pretend.
Beneath the image on the web site have been remarks by Khamenei in December forward of the primary anniversary of the killing by drone of high navy commander Common Qassem Soleimani in Iraq, which was ordered by Trump.
“Each the murderers and those that ordered it ought to know that revenge could come at any time,” mentioned the feedback, reproduced on high of the picture, which confirmed the shadow of a drone looming over the lone golfer. Trump was not named.
Tensions grew quickly between Tehran and Washington after 2018, when Trump exited a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and 6 world powers and reimposed crippling sanctions on Iran.
Tehran retaliated for the killing of Soleimani with missile strikes towards U.S. targets in Iraq however the two sides backed away from additional confrontation.
Excessive rigidity and danger of struggle appeared to subside with the top of Trump’s time period as his successor President Joe Biden, sworn in on Wednesday, has mentioned Washington seeks to elongate and strengthen the nuclear constraints on Iran via diplomacy.
An official near Khamenei’s internal circle mentioned: “The goal (of the tweet) was to remind the gambler (Trump) that leaving workplace doesn’t imply he will probably be protected and the assassination of our martyr Soleimani will probably be forgotten.”
“And now, American troops can not shield him,” the official, who requested to not be named, informed Reuters with out elaborating.
Soleimani, the highest commander of Iran’s elite Quds Power, was accountable for clandestine abroad operations and was extensively seen because the second strongest determine in Iran after Khamenei.
Iran’s navy and clerical rulers have mentioned Tehran would select the time and place of Soleimani’s revenge.
A Tehran-based analyst mentioned the risk might be an finish in itself. “The intention of the tweet appears to be maintaining alive the spectre of revenge, which maybe by itself is a form of revenge,” the analyst mentioned, asking to not be named as a result of sensitivity of the problem.
A Twitter spokeswoman mentioned the @khamenei_site account was suspended for violating the corporate’s platform manipulation and spam coverage, particularly the creation of pretend accounts. Requested if the @khamenei_site account was pretend, she mentioned it was.
Iranian officers weren’t instantly out there to remark.
The golfer picture tweet was retweeted by Khamenei’s most important Persian-language account @Khamenei-fa, though it appeared to have been deleted later. The textual content and graphic of the tweet later carried by Khamenei’s official web site (farsi.khamenei.ir) was additionally extensively quoted by Iranian media.
Khamenei’s @Khamenei_fa account and his most important Twitter account in English, which didn’t carry the golfer picture tweet, have been nonetheless operational.
Earlier this month, Twitter eliminated a tweet by Khamenei during which he mentioned U.S.- and British-made vaccines have been unreliable and could also be supposed to “contaminate different nations”. The platform mentioned the tweet violated its guidelines towards misinformation.
Exiled human rights activists renewed requires Twitter to ban Khamenei. “I hope the world can see how they (Iranian officers) can use social media to advertise violence,” U.S.-based activist Massih Alinejad informed Reuters.
Twitter completely suspended Trump’s personal account following the Jan. 6 storming of the U.S. Capitol by a few of his supporters, citing what it described as the chance of additional incitement of violence.
(Reporting by Dubai newsroom and Elizabeth Culliford; Philippa Fletcher; Modifying by Jon Boyle and Howard Goller)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost employees and is generated by auto-feed.