Iran fires 3 ambassadors, recalls 18 envoys after row over Israel

ImageTehran, Oct. 28 – Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has fired his country’s ambassadors to Britain, France, and Germany, and ordered 18 envoys to be recalled to Tehran, a government official in the Iranian capital told Iran Focus.

“Ahmadinejad has been angered by what he sees as the envoys’ meek reaction to the global condemnation of his Wednesday speech against Israel and the West”, the official, who requested anonymity, said. “He made the speech with the full blessing of the Supreme Leader [Ayatollah Ali Khamenei] and has his green light to stifle any dissenting voice within the government”.

The official said that while there was broad consensus within the clergy-dominated regime on the hard-line President’s vow to “wipe Israel off the map”, some Iranian diplomats voiced concern that the international backlash could be too costly for the Islamic Republic.

On Friday, an array of top political and military figures in Iran lined up behind Ahmadinejad’s fiery speech. The Commander in Chief of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards, the Speaker of Parliament, the Secretary General of the Supreme National Security Council and the powerful Minister of Intelligence and Security (Iran’s secret police) were among those who fully endorsed the President’s diatribe and made equally strong invectives against Israel.

“The Supreme Leader and his inner council see a window of opportunity for Iran right now, as the Americans are stuck in Iraq and the Europeans are divided over what to do”, he said. “They are telling everyone not to be afraid of threats of military action by the West, as this is only a bluff”.

The ambassadors who are being fired were appointed during the administration of ex-President Mohammad Khatami.