Iran accuses Netherlands of backing 'terrorists'

TEHRAN — Iran accused the Netherlands on Tuesday of backing 'terrorists' amid a diplomatic spat between the two countries over the execution and hushed burial of a Dutch-Iranian woman in Iran.

Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast accused the Netherlands of making "a human rights issue out of an indefensible drug case and applying political pressure" on Iran.

"We can see an example of the wrong path of Western countries, especially The Netherlands, in supporting terrorist groups... who have over 12,000 killings in their records," Mehmanparast said at his weekly press conference.

He was alluding to the Islamic republic's armed opposition, the People's Mujahedeen Organisation of Iran, some of whom live in western Europe as refugees.

"The behaviour of these statesmen is turning their countries into a sanctuary for criminals, smugglers and terrorists.

"It is really deplorable that those countries which claim to defend human rights and pose as civilised support cases involving crime, adultery or drug trafficking," Mehmanparast said.

The Netherlands on Monday summoned Iran's ambassador in The Hague to protest the hushed burial of Zahra Bahrami, who was hanged on January 29 after being convicted of a drugs offence.

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