Roger L. Simon

Something's Happening in Khuzestan

Where?

Khuzestan, for those of us only faintly aware of its existence, is the oil-rich region of Southern Iran where a separatist movement among the Arabs has been in progress for some time. Today, according to Sify, at least eight people were killed and seventy-five wounded there in a series of bombings in the days before the Iranian election.

Khuzestan’s deputy governor Gholam Reza Shariati said the unidentified attackers were trying to damage “the territorial integrity of the country and the election process.”

Iran is due to go to the polls to elect a new president on Friday.

“We cannot say for now who committed these attacks, but the intelligence ministry is investigating,” Shariati told state televsion, but added: “the attacks are a failure, because in the past the regime has been confronted by far worse.”

What’s afoot? Don’t ask me but Debka reports the following:

Since April separatist unrest in Iran’s richest oil region in south west is spreading with bomb attacks on mainline trains, banks and government buildings.

Tehran has just stopped Iranian pilgrimage to Iraqi Shiite shrines, virtually shutting its borders with Iraq. Iran accuses US and Iraqi intelligence of recruiting and training Khuzestani pilgrims as anti-government guerrillas.

On April 22, DEBKA-Net-Weekly 203 lead article explored Khuzestan Arab Spring offensive and its Kurdish Iraqi backing. On May 6, DNW 204 revealed Khuzestan Front’s No. 2 leader Said Taher Naama paid secret visit to White House April 23.

Can anyone corroborate that?