Iran appoints new IRGC spy chief as Israel’s tensions rise | News

Written by Javed Iqbal

No reason was given as to why Hossein Taeb, now adviser to Iran’s commander-in-chief of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards, was replaced.

Tehran, Iran – Iran appointed a new chief to lead the powerful intelligence service of its Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) without any justification as to why the former chief left the job.

Ramezan Sharif, a spokesman for the elite force, announced in a statement on Thursday that Hossein Taeb had been replaced by Mohammad Kazemi, who previously headed the Intelligence Protection Organization, the IRGC’s counter-intelligence arm.

The 59-year-old Taeb, a former senior figure in Iran’s intelligence ministry, switched to the IRGC in the late 2000s and was appointed head of the Basij paramilitary organization in 2008.

A year later, the IRGC’s intelligence unit was formed and Taeb took over the helm, a position he held until his replacement was announced.

On Thursday, no reason was given for Taeb’s resignation by the IRGC spokesman, who only said that Taeb had been appointed as adviser to the force’s commander-in-chief. Hossein Salami.

The news came after two days of rumors online that Taeb had been fired from his position. No Iranian official commented on the speculation.

Taeb’s replacement comes days after Israeli media reported he was behind an alleged Iran’s plan to kill or abduct Israeli tourists In Turkey.

Israel raised its Istanbul travel advice to the highest alarm level earlier this month, saying citizens could be hit by Iranian attempts to kill or abduct Israelis on holiday in Turkey.

Dying nuclear deal

In July 2021, the news agency Reuters claimed in a report, citing unnamed Iraqi sources, that Taeb was leading an IRGC delegation to Baghdad and advising Shia militias to escalate attacks on US targets without going too far.

Tensions between Iran and the United States across the region have escalated significantly since Washington unilaterally abandoned Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers in 2018, and imposed harsh sanctions, which are enforced to this day.

The murder of January 2020 Qassem Soleimani – the influential chief of the IRGC’s Quds Force – of the United States took the tensions to new heights.

Iran and the United States have so far been unable to reach an agreement on restoring the nuclear deal, and the question of whether a “foreign terrorist organization” imposed on the IRGC by the United States will be repealed is one of the biggest problems.

Iran’s opposition to Israel, which is strongly opposed to the nuclear deal, has also deteriorated significantly as nuclear negotiations have stalled over the past few months.

Several IRGC staff has been killed in recent months, but Iran has not blamed them all. It has, however accused Israel and promised revenge for the assassination of IRGC Quds Force Colonel Hassan Sayyad Khodaei, who was assassinated in a drive-by shooting in Tehran in late May.

A Tehran court on Thursday ruled that the United States should pay $ 4.3 billion in punitive and compensatory compensation to families in several Iranian nuclear scientists who were murdered in recent years. The court said the US government had helped Israel with the killings.

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Javed Iqbal

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