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      Iran: U.S. Massacre Just Like Killings in Syria, Iraq

      Tehran draws parallel between Newtown tragedy and child victims of armed actions in Iraq and Syria, where it is heavily involved itself.
      By Gil Ronen
      First Publish: 12/15/2012, 7:20 PM

      Cemetery for victims of Assad's forces.
      Cemetery for victims of Assad's forces.
      Reuters

      Iran expressed condemnation Saturday of the Connecticut school massacre but added that there is "no difference" between it and the killing of children in various hotspots in the Middle East, including Syria and Iraq – where Iran itself is involved in killing tens of thousands of civilians, including thousands of children.

      Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast condemned the “tragic incident” and expressed sympathy with the families of the victims, the website of state broadcaster IRIB reported, according to an Iranian blog.

      Mehmanparast also called on American society to mobilize against “warmongering and the massacre of innocent people anywhere, through terrorism, whether state-sponsored or not.

      “There is no difference between children and teenagers who fall victim to armed actions, whether it be inside Gaza, the U.S., Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq or Syria,” Mehmanparast said in a statement.

      Iran is the only Middle Eastern ally of Syrian strongman Bashar Assad, where over 40,000 people have been killed in an ongoing civil war. About half of these are civilians.

      America's ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, stated at the U.N. Security Council earlier this year that Iran is "very much complicit in the killing that is going on" in Syria.

      "I can say is that Iran by own admission has bragged about its arming of the forces—the Syrian government forces and its own involvement inside of Syria," Rice said in response to a question on the topic. "So I think they’re saying it publicly themselves. That’s been our understanding for quite some while, so whether, specific to who or more broadly, they are very much complicit in the killing that is going on."

      U.S. Major General Rick Lynch has claimed that Iran has provided training, weapons, money, and intelligence to Shiite insurgents in Iraq and that members of the Iranian Quds Force and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard have trained members of the Qazali terror network in explosives technology and also provided the network with arms, munitions, and military advisors.

      Many explosive devices, including improvised explosives and armor-piercing penetrators used by insurgents are Iranian-made or designed, Lynch said.