Prince Harry is embroiled in a row over a British-Iranian execution, with the regime claiming that his ‘killing of 25 innocent people’ in Afghanistan means the UK should not ‘preach’ about human rights.
In the midst of the escalating row over Alireza Akbari’s execution, the Iranian regime has used Prince Harry’s confession that he killed 25 Taliban in Afghanistan against the British government.
Iran claimed it was ‘in no position to preach’ in a series of tweets criticizing Britain’s outrage over the killing of the British-Iranian dual national accused of spying.
The official Twitter account of the Iran Foreign Ministry accused the Duke of Sussex of showing no remorse over the killings of ‘innocent’ lives and accused Britain of allowing this ‘war crime’.
‘The British regime, whose royal family member sees the killing of 25 innocent people as chess pieces and has no regrets over the issue, and those who turn a blind eye to this war crime are in no position to preach others on human rights,’ it said.
The post was referring to a contentious passage in Harry’s new memoir Spare about the death count.
His remarks, which sparked security concerns, have already provided the Taliban and extremist Anjem Choudary with fodder to spread propaganda against British troops.
The former soldier used his book to describe how he shot down 25 militants while serving in Afghanistan ten years ago, feeling neither satisfaction nor shame about his actions.
He went on to say that in order to deal with the incidents, he dehumanized his victims by viewing them as ‘chess pieces’ rather than people.
The Iranian regime seizes on the passage as tensions between Tehran and London rise in the aftermath of Akbari’s execution.
Akbari, 61, came to the UK on an investment visa and became a naturalised citizen before being lured back to Iran three years ago by the security services. However, in 2019, the ex-deputy Iranian defense minister was arrested and convicted of spying for the UK, a charge he denied.
His death last week has caused outrage in Britain with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak calling it a ‘callous and cowardly act, carried out by a barbaric regime’.
Mohammad Jafar Montazeri, the Iranian prosecutor general, has been barred from leaving the country and his assets have been frozen by ministers.
Foreign Secretary James Cleverly has also removed Britain’s ambassador to Iran, Simon Shercliff, for the time being.
In an indication of its hardening stance toward the Islamic republic, the United Kingdom is considering designating Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, the most powerful wing of its military, as a terrorist organization.
The Iran Foreign Ministry branded Britain’s ‘uproar and the support of some European self-proclaimed defenders of human rights’ as a’sign of their evasion and violation of law’ in a series of Tweets.
‘Britain’s encroachment on the Islamic Republic of Iran’s national security has been met with a decisive response from the Iranian intelligence and judiciary,’ it added. Tensions between the West and Iran are already high due to Tehran’s crackdown on nationwide women’s rights protests, as well as its support for Russia’s drone invasion of Ukraine.
Iran has arrested at least 14,000 people in response to the death in custody on September 16 of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian Kurdish woman arrested for allegedly violating the strict dress code for women.
Journalists, filmmakers, lawyers, and activists have been arrested, and several executions, as well as the deaths of hundreds of protesters in clashes with Iran’s security forces, have been reported.