Iran considers assassinating US ambassador to South Africa: report

Iran considers assassinating US ambassador to South Africa: report
Two US officials have told a news magazine that Iran is considering assassinating the US ambassador to South Africa in revenge for the killing of Qasem Soleimani
2 min read
14 September, 2020
Lana Marks is reportedly being targeted by Iran [Getty]
Iran is considering an attempt to assassinate the US ambassador to South Africa in revenge for the January 2020 US killing of Iranian Revolutionary Guard commander Qasem Soleimani, the US news magazine Politico reported on Sunday.

The magazine quoted two anonymous US government officials, one of whom had seen US intelligence reports about the issue, as its sources.

Iran officially retaliated against the US for the killing of Soleimani by bombing a base in Iraq where US troops were present but is still looking for other ways to get revenge, according to the American officials.

The effects of Iran's attack on the base were relatively minor, with some US troops sustaining relatively light trauma injuries as a result.

Read more: New Iranian game promises 'revenge' for US killing of General Soleimani

The US ambassador to South Africa, Lana Marks, has been informed that there is a potential threat against her, according to one of the officials quoted.

US officials found that there was a threat against the ambassador several months ago, but only received specific information recently, according to Politico.

The Iranian embassy in Pretoria is involved in the plot against Marks, one of the US government officials quoted by Politico said.

Marks, who became US ambassador to South Africa in October 2019, has little to connect her with Iran or US policy regarding the Middle Eastern country.

However, she has known US President Donald Trump for 20 years and is a member of his Mar-a-Lago exclusive resort club. The 66-year-old owns a successful handbag design company and was a friend of the late Princess Diana.

The anonymous US officials believe that her personal friendship with Trump has made her a target for Iran, which has an extensive network of operatives in South Africa focused on busting sanctions through front companies.

They said that if the assassination is carried out, that would dramatically increase tensions between Iran and the US and necessitate US military action against Iran.

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