Iran slams Saudi claim that it harbors Al-Qaeda

Ahmet Dursun

TEHRAN: Iran’s Foreign Ministry has dismissed allegations by the crown prince of Saudi Arabia that Tehran was providing sanctuary to Al-Qaeda leaders.

“[Saudi Crown Prince] Mohammad bin Salman’s claim that Iran is harboring Al-Qaeda leaders is a big lie,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said in a Tuesday statement.

Qassemi went on to assert that “some Al-Qaeda affiliates, including relatives of former terrorist leader Osama bin Laden, were arrested [by Iran] and deported to Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia while fleeing the U.S. invasion in 2001”.

In a Sunday interview with a major American television network, Saudi Arabia’s crown prince accused Iran of being a “destabilizing force” in the region by continuing to harbor Al-Qaeda leaders. (AA)