Iran attempts to link U.S. to double suicide bombing that killed 28

A Sunni insurgent group said it carried out a double suicide bombing against a Shiite mosque in southeast Iran to avenge the execution of its leader, as Iranian authorities on Friday said the death toll rose to 27.
By Thomas Erdbrink
Washington Post Foreign Service
Saturday, July 17, 2010

TEHRAN -- The double suicide bombing that killed at least 28 people in the southeastern Iranian province of Sistan-Baluchistan on Thursday was "in line with United States policies against the Islamic republic," state-run radio said Friday.

The Sunni rebel group Jundallah, which Iranian officials have said has links to the United States, asserted responsibility for the attack Thursday. Jundallah described it as retaliation for Iran's execution in June of the group's leader, Abdul Malik Rigi.

State radio is taking the lead in an apparent attempt by the government to hold the United States at least partly responsible for the bombing. Iran has long accused Washington of supporting separatist groups active in the country's western and eastern border areas, although without providing conclusive evidence.

"America aims to support those grouplets who are able to carry out terrorist operations in Iran," the main news program said. "The terrorists were . . . equipped and trained by a foreign intelligence organization to slaughter people."

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said in a statement Thursday that "the United States condemns all forms of terrorism and sectarian-driven violence, wherever it occurs."

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