Iran’s foreign minister called a statement issued by the White House in the wake of a terrorist attack in Tehran “repugnant” and said his nation would not accept condolences offered by the U.S.
“Repugnant WH statement & Senate sanctions as Iranians counter terror backed by US clients. Iranian people reject such US claims of friendship,” foreign minister Javad Zarif wrote on Twitter late Wednesday night.
Gunmen and suicide bombers killed at least 13 people in Tehran on Wednesday in an attack on the Iranian parliament building and the mausoleum of Ayatollah Khomeini. Iran’s Revolutionary Guard blamed the attack on Saudi Arabia, a key U.S. ally and a regional rival that practices a different form of Islam than the one endorsed by the Iranian government.
Saudi Arabia has denied any involvement and the Islamic State had claimed responsibility for the attacks.
The White House statement, issued Wednesday afternoon, offered prayers for the Iranian victims but also jabbed at the government in Tehran over its support of groups viewed by the U.S. as terrorists.
“We grieve and pray for the innocent victims of the terrorist attacks in Iran, and for the Iranian people, who are going through such challenging times,” the White House statement said. “We underscore that states that sponsor terrorism risk falling victim to the evil they promote.”