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9/11 was suspect event: Ahmadinejad

Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reaffirms his doubts about the accepted version of the 2001 attacks on the US describing the strikes as a suspect event.

world Updated: Apr 16, 2008 18:18 IST

Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Wednesday reaffirmed his doubts about the accepted version of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States, describing the strikes as a "suspect event".

"Four or five years ago a suspect event took place in New York," Ahmadinejad said in a speech to a public rally in the holy city of Qom broadcast live on state television.

"A building collapsed and they said that 3,000 people had been killed, whose names were never published."

"Under this pretext they (the United States) attacked Afghanistan and Iraq and since then a million people have been killed," he said.

This was the third time in just over a week that Ahmadinejad has publicly raised doubts about the September 11 airborne attacks on New York and Washington carried out by Al-Qaeda militants which killed nearly 3,000 people.

He raised the theme for the first time at a ceremony on April 8, Iran's national day marking its controversial nuclear programme, which the West fears could be used to make nuclear weapons.

He then expressed his doubts again one day later at an address at the shrine of the eighth imam of Shiite Islam Reza in the northeastern city of Mashhad, one of Iran's most sacred sites.

The speech in Qom -- which was the first time he had described the September 11 attacks as "suspect" -- took place at the shrine of Massoumeh, the sister of the imam Reza.

Ahmadinejad did not say who he believed was behind the September 11 attacks. On April 8, he questioned how the two planes piloted by Al-Qaeda militants could have evaded surveillance to crash into the World Trade Centre.

He also reaffirmed his determination to change the international order.