World Media

Iran Summons Kuwaiti Envoy over 'Groundless' Accusations

Iran Summons Kuwaiti Envoy over 'Groundless' Accusations”

Iran summoned the Kuwaiti charge d'affaires on Thursday to protest the Arab state's restrictions on the Iranian mission, semi-official Fars news agency reported without further elaboration.

"The Islamic Republic of Iran has no implications in case and the Kuwaiti authorities had been notified of this from the outset", Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said on Thursday.

Tensions between the two countries come after Kuwait convicted 23 men - one Iranian and the rest Kuwaiti - of spying for Iran and Hezbollah previous year, after a cache of guns and explosives was found in a so-called "Abdali cell" in 2015.

Iran reacted angrily, saying the accusations it was behind a terrorist cell were baseless and threatened to take similar steps.

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Kuwait has made a decision to shut down Iran's cultural attaché office in the country and reduce the number of Iranian diplomats.

Iranian official source, ISNA news agency, reported that Ambassador Alireza Enayati has been asked to leave.

Kuwait's supreme court last month sentenced the mastermind of the cell to life in jail and condemned 20 others to various prison terms for links with Iran and Lebanese Shia militia Hezbollah, and plotting terror attacks in Kuwait.

On Wednesday, Kuwait's Interior Ministry published photos of 16 people who were sentenced in absentia by a court in the Abdali cell case. They were tried and convicted after guns and explosives were discovered in a raid.

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He urged the regional states to maintain friendly relations with Iran because they "need it".

The supreme court, whose rulings are final, overturned their acquittal on June 18 and sentenced them to between five and 15 years in prison.

Kuwait's acting information minister, Sheikh Mohammad al-Mubarak al-Sabah, said in a statement that the move was taken in "accordance with diplomatic norms and in abidance with the Vienna conventions with regards to its relationship with the Islamic Republic of Iran".

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