Near total silence reigns in Tehran over the Israeli media’s claim that the Mossad apprehended and interrogated an agent of the Revolutionary Guards at his home in Iran.
A short audio recording was released by Israeli media on Saturday with a photo of a man identified as Iranian national Mansour Rasouli, 52. In audio recordingRasouli says he was sent to Turkey by the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) to establish an operational network to assassinate an Israeli diplomat in Istanbul, a US general based in Germany and a journalist in France.
Audio recording surfaced a few hours after the Iran International report of the alleged Iranian triple assassination plot. Iran International diplomatic sources said an IRGC Quds Force operative was detained in an unnamed European country over assassination plots in Germany, France and Turkey.
Seemingly deceived by his interrogators’ claim that they belonged to one of Iran’s many intelligence services, Rasouli states in the recording that agreeing to carry out the operation was a mistake he would never make again.
Israeli television channels including Channel 12 which aired the recording, without providing a source according to The Times of Israel, claimed it was made by Mossad agents posing as Iranian intelligence at Rasouli’s home in Tehran, but did not detain him after the interrogation. The newspaper also said Hebrew-language media reported that some Israeli officials confirmed information about the plot by Iran International on Saturday.
Channel 12 added, also without citing a source, that the Shin Bet security agency – which usually operates in Israel – was also involved in the detention in Iran.
Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the Iranian nuclear official assassinated in Tehran by Israel in November 2020
iranian media, except the semi-official Mehr news agency and Mashregh Radical News Site who did very brief references to a Haarez report on the foiled plot to assassinate an employee of the Israeli consulate in Turkey, remained silent on the Iran International report and the audio recording shared by Israeli media.
Iranian, Israeli and Turkish officials have not commented on reports of alleged assassination plots.
It is unclear whether Rasouli, whose current whereabouts are unknown, and the agent who diplomatic sources said was detained in Europe are the same person or different agents involved in the same operation.
Israel reportedly carried out dozens of operations and assassinations inside Iran, including the assassination of Iran’s top nuclearist and senior IRGC member Mohsen Fakhrizadeh in November 2020 for whom he never officially assumed responsibility. Former Mossad chief Yossi Cohen in June 2021 strongly suggested that Israel was behind the attacks on Iranian nuclear facilities.
Referring to the February 2018 theft of thousands of secret Iranian nuclear documents from a warehouse near Tehran, Cohen said more than 20 Mossad agents were involved in the operation. He said the agents were not Israelis, adding that they were all alive and some of them had already left Iran.
Following Cohen’s remarks, former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who in recent years has presented himself as an opposition figure, alleged that Iran’s top intelligence official responsible for countering Israeli spies in Iran was himself an agent of Israel.
Ahmadinejad did not name anyone or specify the period in question but attributed the success of Israel’s intelligence operations in Iran to Tel Aviv’s high level of influence and infiltration into Iranian intelligence and security agencies.