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SA calls for calm in Middle East after assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist

Naledi Pandor

Fakhrizadeh was one of Iran’s most prominent nuclear scientists and was the head of the defence ministry’s research and innovation organization.

His death was confirmed by Iranian authorities on Friday. He was fatally wounded while travelling outside Tehran during an attack on his car and a shootout between his security team and the attackers.

The Iranian government has accused the Israeli government of orchestrating the attack. International Relations and Cooperation Minister Dr Naledi Pandor has condemned the assassination.

She noted that Fakhrizadeh was the second prominent Iranian to be killed in this manner this year.

Pandor added that the targeted killing of Iranians will further exacerbate the volatility in the region, saying extrajudicial killings of this nature have a destabilizing effect.

“We commend the restraint of the Iranian government, despite the continued unfair targeting and outside interference in the affairs of the country,” she said.

Pandor has appealed to all states to work towards lasting peace and security in the Middle East through dialogue, rather than confrontation, and added that South Africa is ready to assist in this regard.

-The Citizen

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