by WorldTribune Staff, October 18, 2018
The Iranian diplomat who was arrested in connection to a plot to bomb an Iranian opposition group rally in Paris enjoys full diplomatic immunity, Iran’s Foreign Ministry said on Oct. 14.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said the diplomat, Assadollah Assadi, has full immunity, clarifying earlier media reports that Qassemi had said Assadi’s immunity was limited to Vienna.
Assadi worked at Iran’s embassy in Austria, but was arrested in Germany.
Last week, prosecutors said Germany extradited Assadi to Belgium.
Related: Iranian diplomat extradited to Belgium to face charges in bomb-plot case, October 11, 2018
“What I have said was that his diplomatic immunity is related to a diplomatic position he had in Austria,” Qassemi stated, adding that Article 40 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations 1961 grants the Iranian diplomat immunity during trips to or from his mission in Vienna.
In June, Belgian authorities said Assadi had been arrested along with a 38-year-old man and a 33-year-old woman, suspected of plotting a bomb attack on a rally in Paris of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), which was attended by U.S. President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and several former European and Arab ministers.
Belgian police intercepted the two suspects in Belgium with 500 grams of the homemade explosive TATP and a detonation device found in their car.
Assadi, 46, was arrested in Germany, suspected of having been in contact with the two suspects arrested in Belgium.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in July said that the arrest of the Iranian diplomat was a “sinister false flag ploy.”