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Al Arabiya upsets Iranian supreme leader’s newspaper

Kayhan newspaper accused Professor Sadegh Zibakalam of being against his country

Published: Updated:

Pro-Iranian regime media are regularly quoting Al Arabiya News Channel, and its Arabic language website, which also publishes in Farsi, amidst Tehran’s war of words against Saudi Arabia since the Hajj tragedy late last month.

Iranian outlets were recently angered when the Al Arabiya website quoted an Iranian activist and academic who said that the stampede in Mina, which led to the deaths of hundreds of pilgrims, clearly showed Tehran’s hatred of Arabs.

Kayhan newspaper, which is known for being close to the regime’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, accused Professor Sadegh Zibakalam of being against his country.

Kayhan has also accused the Iranian professor, who is close to President Hassan Rowhani, of supporting Saudi Arabia because he condemned Iran’s stance against the kingdom.

The newspaper quoted some of Zibakalam’s posts on Facebook where he stated that the tragedy, that took place near Makkah’s tent city of Mina, was exploited by Iranians to express their hatred. Zibakalam added that the standpoints of Iranian officials were harsher than the feeling of the average citizen.

Kayhan also slammed Mohammad Hashemi, an Iranian official who has criticized some governmental figures for their stance on the incident, namely Khamenei. Mohammad Hashemi said that it is difficult to pass judgment in such cases, and recalled when 8 millimeters of rain caused several deaths in Tehran.

Various newspapers and media outlets close to the Iranian regime are still issuing contradictory scenarios about the Mina incident - especially on which Iranian diplomats and officers died there during the Hajj.

Pro-Iranian media are still broadcasting provocative speeches against the kingdom.

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