U.S. accuses Iran of helping Syria suppress protests

The U.S. State Department accuses Iran of helping the Syrian government’s efforts to suppress protests that have taken place there in recent weeks.

“We believe that there is credible information that Iran is assisting Syria” in quelling the protesters, department spokesman Mark Toner said Thursday.

U.S. officials said the Iranian assistance includes gear used to suppress crowds, as well as equipment and technical advice for monitoring and blocking e-mail, cell phones, text messaging, and internet postings by and among activists.

Syria’s Foreign Ministry told the nation’s official news agency, SANA, that the claim is “absolutely untrue.”

An official at Iran’s mission to the United Nations said Iran “categorically rejects” the accusation as “totally baseless and unfounded.”

He added, “This and similar allegations are in line with the mainstream anti-Iranian propaganda masterminded and propagated by known circles in the United States to tarnish the image of Iran and Syria.”

But Toner said of the Iranians, “They continue to play a meddling role in the region.”

American officials said Iran’s government is also sharing with Syria the best practices it developed during Tehran’s crackdown on the “green movement” protesters in 2009.

One security tactic Iran has developed, according to former Pentagon intelligence analyst Michael Rubin, is arresting protesters days later, rather than in the middle of heated street protests.

“What Iran does is, they take photos” of anti-government protesters, Rubin said. “Then they come, over the next two or three weeks, and they will round up people in the middle of the night, where you won’t create a spark, where you won’t create a backlash.

“That may be what they’re trying to teach Syria right now.”

The U.S. allegation was first reported in the Wall Street Journal. CNN

  • NAGDELLA

    Has the US accused Saudi Arabia of suppressing the protests in Bahrain yet or are we still waiting?

    • PROPHET.T

      You will have to wait for a long time for such a statement from the united states,. Double standard is the norm ,not the exception here.lol

    • PROPHET.T

      You will have to wait for a long time for such a statement from the united states,. Double standard is the norm ,not the exception here.lol

  • Anonymous

    Has the US accused Saudi Arabia of suppressing the protests in Bahrain yet or are we still waiting?

    • PROPHET.T

      You will have to wait for a long time for such a statement from the united states,. Double standard is the norm ,not the exception here.lol

  • Amine123

    Yes of course, Iran expert in killing civilian and imprisoning everyone who dare … Both regime must go and the people should resist until they regain their freedom. Iran non Islamic republic ruled by bunch of mullahs who killed many people to stay in power…..

  • Amine123

    Yes of course, Iran expert in killing civilian and imprisoning everyone who dare … Both regime must go and the people should resist until they regain their freedom. Iran non Islamic republic ruled by bunch of mullahs who killed many people to stay in power…..

  • Anonymous

    Yes of course, Iran expert in killing civilian and imprisoning everyone who dare … Both regime must go and the people should resist until they regain their freedom. Iran non Islamic republic ruled by bunch of mullahs who killed many people to stay in power…..

  • Anonymous

    Yes of course, Iran expert in killing civilian and imprisoning everyone who dare … Both regime must go and the people should resist until they regain their freedom. Iran non Islamic republic ruled by bunch of mullahs who killed many people to stay in power…..

  • Anonymous

    Yes of course, Iran expert in killing civilian and imprisoning everyone who dare … Both regime must go and the people should resist until they regain their freedom. Iran non Islamic republic ruled by bunch of mullahs who killed many people to stay in power…..