Conservative MP Javad Karimi-Ghodousi has added three new names to his list of alleged Iranian “nuclear spies.” These spies are on the run, according to the MP.
An Iran-Iraq War veteran and former Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) commander, Karimi-Ghodousi presented the names in an interview with the Enghelab (Revolution) news website on May 2.
Karimi-Ghodousi had previously named Abdolrasoul Dorri-Esfahani as a spy and foreign agent.
Dorri-Esfahani was part of the Iranian team that secured a nuclear agreement, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, with world powers. Following the nuclear agreement, President Hassan Rouhani decorated him with a medal of honor. Dorri-Esfahani was also one of the experts advising the Iranian nuclear team on banking issues and economic sanctions against Tehran.
Karimi-Ghodousi first accused Dorri-Esfahani last year of espionage in favor of foreigners. The accusation was echoed in media outlets related to the IRGC. This was not unexpected, as hardliners close to the IRGC have consistently campaigned against the nuclear deal as a sell-out and have pinned the blame on Rouhani.
However, Iran’s Foreign Ministry immediately denied the allegation and dismissed the reports as baseless at the time. Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi also dismissed the allegation in a letter to parliament.
In late October 2016, the Iranian News Agency reported the charges against Dorri-Esfahani had been dropped.
The Hidden "Gang of Four"
Karimi-Ghodousi’s latest accusations against Dorri-Esfahani come as the May 19 presidential election campaign is well under way. He also mentioned Moshkan Mashkour, Cyrus Nasseri, and Ramazani to his so-called list of nuclear spies.
In his latest interview, he did not elaborate either on Nasseri, a veteran in Iran nuclear negotiations or Ramazani, whose first name was not given in the interview.
Mashkour, a lawyer, was also part of the team behind the JCPOA.
Karimi-Ghodousi said the prominent members of Iran’s nuclear talks team -- Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and deputies Abbas Araghchi and Majid Takht Ravanchi, plus Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran -- were a mere facade for the other four, who carried out the “real” negotations.
“The first four acted in ceremonial capacities, signing the documents, whereas the hidden four played the leading roles in secret and carried out the serious negotiations,” he said.
Karimi-Ghoddousi has been unable to substantiate his allegations so far with any evidence. Nevertheless, he insists that Dorri-Esfahani’s crime has been legally proved and his trial is under way.