Pouria Zeraati, the television host of the "Last Word" program on Iran International, at hospital following a knife attack in London (March 30, 2024)

Assailants Of Iran International Presenter Were Eastern European Mercs - Report

Thursday, 04/18/2024

British investigators believe that the three suspects sought in connection with the stabbing of Iran International's presenter are from Eastern Europe.

According to an exclusive report by the Guardian on Thursday, the investigators are looking into whether one of the suspects has connections to Albania.

The investigators interviewed by The Guardian believe that the assailants were recruited and flown to the UK specifically to execute the assault.

Iran International presenter Pouria Zeraati was stabbed outside his home in Wimbledon, in south London, late in March and sustained leg injuries.

Shortly after the attack, London Metropolitan Police announced that considering previous threats against journalists in Persian-language media outlets, the incident is being handled by specialized officers from the Met's counter-terrorism division. Earlier in the month, London Metropolitan police said the three suspects fled the UK after the attack, triggering an international manhunt.

Guardian further reported that Western sources believe that those likely responsible for the attack, presumed to be acting in the interests of the Iranian regime, utilized connections and insights into criminal networks to recruit the assailants.

Senior British counter-terrorism officials, as per The Guardian's report, believe that employing "criminal proxies provides Tehran with plausible deniability" as those recruited are unlikely to be on terror watchlists which would prevent them from entering the UK.

Last year, federal indictments revealed that three individuals linked to an Eastern European mafia group were charged by the United States for plotting to assassinate Iranian-American journalist and activist Masih Alinejad at the request of the Iranian regime.

The US Justice Department announced that the Eastern European mafia group charged "has ties to Iran and is violent, engaging in murders, kidnappings, assaults, and extortions".


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