McMaster Stresses US Determination to Confront Iran’s ‘Proxies’

National Security Adviser General H.R. McMaster. Reuters file photo
National Security Adviser General H.R. McMaster. Reuters file photo
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McMaster Stresses US Determination to Confront Iran’s ‘Proxies’

National Security Adviser General H.R. McMaster. Reuters file photo
National Security Adviser General H.R. McMaster. Reuters file photo

US National Security Adviser General H.R. McMaster has said that Washington is determined to confront Iran’s proxies, including Hezbollah.

In an interview with Alhurra news network, McMaster also accused Iran of taking advantage of divisions within the Kurdish Regional Government, to promote its own interests.

“The most dangerous course of action to take is to not confront Hezbollah, to not confront these Iranian proxies who are propping up the (Bashar) Assad regime, and helping that regime continue to murder its own people. To not confront Iran's support for Houthis in Yemen in a way that was perpetuating that civil war there,” he said.

“What is most important, not just for the United States but for all nations, is to confront the scourge of Hezbollah and to confront the scourge of the Iranians and the IRGC [Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps] who sustain Hezbollah's operations,” McMaster told Alhurra.

He also said that Iran played a role in the aftermath of the independence referendum held in Iraq’s Kurdistan region last month.

“The role that they placed is they took advantage of divisions within the Kurdish Regional Government … and what they have done is tried to advance their interest.”

McMaster expressed US concern over the tension between Baghdad and the Kurdistan region’s capital Erbil.

“The United States is very committed to a unified, strong Iraq,” he said.

“We're also committed to a strong Kurdish region within a unified Iraq. So, what we're very concerned about is violence that could continue, that could place in jeopardy all these gains against ISIS in recent months,” the National Security Adviser added.

“When you look at what is necessary to bring communities together, to end the cycle of violence, it is very difficult to imagine how Assad could be part of that. I mean, especially with the blood that's on his hands. And how he has had a hand in destroying his own country, and creating so much human suffering,” McMaster said in response to a question on a political solution in Syria.

He said Assad has used "some of the most heinous weapons on Earth to commit mass murder against his own people. So what is, I think, necessary is to have the right leadership internationally, and then ultimately within Syria, that can — that can achieve the kind of accommodation, the kind of reconciliation that's necessary.”



Iran Top Court Overturns Rapper Toomaj Salehi’s Death Sentence, Lawyer Says

People hold placards bearing portraits of Iranian rapper Toomaj Salehi, who is arrested in Iran, and portraits of children (L), who were killed during the protests in Iran, during a rally in support of Iranian women in Istanbul, on November 26, 2022. (AFP)
People hold placards bearing portraits of Iranian rapper Toomaj Salehi, who is arrested in Iran, and portraits of children (L), who were killed during the protests in Iran, during a rally in support of Iranian women in Istanbul, on November 26, 2022. (AFP)
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Iran Top Court Overturns Rapper Toomaj Salehi’s Death Sentence, Lawyer Says

People hold placards bearing portraits of Iranian rapper Toomaj Salehi, who is arrested in Iran, and portraits of children (L), who were killed during the protests in Iran, during a rally in support of Iranian women in Istanbul, on November 26, 2022. (AFP)
People hold placards bearing portraits of Iranian rapper Toomaj Salehi, who is arrested in Iran, and portraits of children (L), who were killed during the protests in Iran, during a rally in support of Iranian women in Istanbul, on November 26, 2022. (AFP)

Iran's supreme court has overturned Iranian rapper Toomaj Salehi's death sentence on charges linked to the country's 2022-23 period of unrest, his lawyer wrote in a post on the X social media platform on Saturday.

"The death sentence of #Toomaj_Salehi was overturned and based on the appeal decision ...of the Supreme Court, the case will be referred to (another) branch for consideration," attorney Amir Raisian wrote on X.

There was no immediate official confirmation of the ruling.

Salehi's songs supported protests sparked by the death in police custody of Mahsa Amini, a young Kurdish Iranian woman arrested for allegedly wearing an "improper" hijab.