Iran rejects U.S. plot claim as "childish"

U.S. officials say they uncovered uncovered a plot to bomb the Saudi Ambassador to the United States, allegedly launched by a special operations unit inside the Iranian military. Pictured in inset: Manssor Arbabsiar, a U.S. citizen with an Iranian passport who was arrested. CBS

As the Obama administration planned to leverage charges that Iran plotted to assassinate Saudi Arabia's ambassador to the United States into a new global campaign to isolate the Islamic Republic, Tehran blasted the allegations as fraudulent.

Iran's parliament speaker, Ali Larijani, called the Justice Department's claims a "childish game."

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"These are cheap claims. By giving it a wide media coverage, it was evident that they are trying to cover up their own problems," Larijani told an open session of the parliament Wednesday, apparently suggesting the American claim was an attempt to divert attention from mounting protests in U.S. cities.

"They (Americans) suffered a political stroke and learned that they had begun a childish game," he said. "We have normal relations with the Saudis. There is no reason for Iran to carry out such childish acts."

Iran's top leader also asserted that the U.S. was in a full-blown crisis due to the Wall Street protests, predicting that they would ultimately topple capitalism in America. Wednesday that the wave of protests reflects a serious crisis that will ultimately topple capitalism in America.

"They (U.S. government) may crack down on this movement but cannot uproot it," Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said. "Ultimately, it will grow so that it will bring down the capitalist system and the West."

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Ali Al-Ahmed, director of Iran's Institute for Gulf Affairs also suggested the Obama administration was, "using Iran to cover up the shortcoming of the United States."

An Iranian political analyst who spoke to Reuters television, said the U.S. charges would "have a huge impact on U.S.-Iran relations. This will take the already convulsive relations to a whole new level."

"My forecast ahead of this revelation and last night's accusation is that there is a possibility of military confrontation between these two countries," said Saeed Laylaz. "We will definitely witness bleaker days between Tehran and Washington D.C."

Iranian residents in the capital city seemed just as unwilling as their leaders -- on camera at least -- to believe the American accusations.

"This is a political trick," Ali Zadeh, 54, told Reuters in Tehran. "We have had problems with the U.S. since the revolution. Naturally, we expect nothing but tricks like this. We have to be prepared to deal with these issues."

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