The image first appeared on a Persian-language Twitter feed that carried a link to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's website.(Reuters file photo)
The image first appeared on a Persian-language Twitter feed that carried a link to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's website.(Reuters file photo)

Top Iran leader posts Trump-like image with drone, vows revenge

Tehran retaliated for Soleimani's killing with missile strikes against US targets in Iraq but the two sides backed away from further confrontation.
Reuters, Dubai
PUBLISHED ON JAN 23, 2021 02:03 PM IST

The website of Iran's Supreme Leader on Friday carried the image of a golfer resembling former President Donald Trump apparently being targeted by a drone alongside a threat of revenge over last year's killing of a top Iranian general in a U.S. drone attack.

The image first appeared on a Persian-language Twitter feed that carried a link to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's website. Twitter took down that feed on Friday, saying it was fake.

Underneath the website picture were remarks by Khamenei in December ahead of the first anniversary this month of the killing of military commander General Qassem Soleimani in Iraq, which was ordered by Trump.

"Both the murderers and those who ordered it should know that revenge may come at any time," said the comments on top of the image, which showed the shadow of a drone looming over the lone golfer. Trump, who regularly plays golf, was not named.

U.S.-Iran tensions grew rapidly after 2018, when Trump exited a 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and six world powers and reimposed crippling sanctions.

Tehran retaliated for Soleimani's killing with missile strikes against U.S. targets in Iraq but the two sides backed away from further confrontation.

High tension and risk of war appeared to subside with the end of Trump's term. His successor President Joe Biden, sworn in on Wednesday, has said Washington seeks to lengthen and strengthen the nuclear constraints on Iran through diplomacy.

Emily Horne, a spokeswoman for the Biden White House National Security Council, said "these kinds of threats from Iran are unacceptable."

"We strongly condemn this provocative action. We will continue to work with our friends and partners to counter Iran’s malign influence," she said in response to a request for comment.

The top Republican on the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee, Michael McCaul, earlier urged the Biden administration "to respond quickly and forcefully to this provocative threat against a former president" and called on Twitter to immediately and permanently suspend Khamenei's account.

An official close to Khamenei’s inner circle said: "The aim (of the tweet) was to remind the gambler (Trump) that leaving office does not mean he will be safe and the assassination of our martyr Soleimani will be forgotten."

"And now, American troops cannot protect him,” the official, who asked not to be named, told Reuters without elaborating.

POWERFUL GENERAL

Soleimani, the commander of Iran's elite Quds Force, was responsible for clandestine overseas operations and was widely seen as the second most powerful figure in Iran after Khamenei.

Iran's military and clerical rulers have said Tehran would choose the time and place of Soleimani's revenge.

A Tehran-based analyst said the threat could be an end in itself: "The intention of the tweet seems to be keeping alive the spectre of revenge, which perhaps by itself is a kind of revenge."

A Twitter spokeswoman said the @khamenei_site account was suspended for violating the company's platform manipulation and spam policy, specifically against the creation of fake accounts. Asked if the @khamenei_site account was fake, she said it was.

Iranian officials were not immediately available to comment.

The golfer image tweet was retweeted by Khamenei's main Persian-language account @Khamenei-fa, although it appeared to have been deleted later. The text and graphic of the tweet later carried by Khamenei's official website (farsi.khamenei.ir) was also widely quoted by Iranian media.

Khamenei's @Khamenei_fa account and his main Twitter account in English, which did not carry the golfer image tweet, were still operational.

Earlier this month, Twitter removed a tweet by Khamenei in which he said U.S.- and British-made vaccines were unreliable and may be intended to "contaminate other nations" for violating its rules against misinformation.

Exiled rights activists renewed calls for Twitter to ban Khamenei. "I hope the world can see how they (Iranian officials) can use social media to promote violence," U.S.-based activist Massih Alinejad told Reuters.

Twitter permanently suspended Trump's account following the Jan. 6 storming of the U.S. Capitol by some of his supporters, citing the risk of further incitement of violence.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Close
Sahouri was among more than 125 reporters detained or arrested during the civil unrest that unfolded across the U.S. in 2020.(via AP)
Sahouri was among more than 125 reporters detained or arrested during the civil unrest that unfolded across the U.S. in 2020.(via AP)

US journalist arrested while covering protest goes on trial

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | AP
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 11:05 PM IST
Des Moines Register news reporter Andrea Sahouri, who was pepper-sprayed and jailed while reporting on a clash between protesters and police in May, is charged with failure to disperse and interference with official acts.
Close
Britain is leading Europe with its vaccination program and aims to offer a jab to all adults by the end of July.(AP)
Britain is leading Europe with its vaccination program and aims to offer a jab to all adults by the end of July.(AP)

UK Covid-19 deaths continue to fall as over one-third population inoculated

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 11:00 PM IST
Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the milestone at a news conference on Monday, the same day the government took its first major step in easing lockdown restrictions by re-opening schools.
Close
Weekly infection numbers rose by a third to more than 123,000 cases between February 24 and March 2, according to the GIMBE health think tank, the highest since early December.(via Reuters)
Weekly infection numbers rose by a third to more than 123,000 cases between February 24 and March 2, according to the GIMBE health think tank, the highest since early December.(via Reuters)

Italy's Covid-19 death toll tops 100,000

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | AFP
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 11:00 PM IST
Just over a year since it became the first European country to be overwhelmed by Covid-19, Italy's health ministry recorded another 318 virus-related deaths, taking the total to 100,103.
Close
US President Joe Biden (FILE PHOTO)
US President Joe Biden (FILE PHOTO)

On Women's Day, Joe Biden creates gender policy council within White House

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 10:59 PM IST
US President Joe Biden created the policy council as part of two executive orders he signed on Monday to mark International Women’s Day.
Close
An Air Force member closes her eyes while getting a shot of Pfizer's vaccine for COVID-19 at a military base in Lima, Peru, Monday, March 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)(AP)
An Air Force member closes her eyes while getting a shot of Pfizer's vaccine for COVID-19 at a military base in Lima, Peru, Monday, March 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)(AP)

Vaccinated people can visit each other mask free, says CDC

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 10:44 PM IST
The agency issued its long-awaited guidance for what fully vaccinated people can safely do, as inoculations rise but as health experts warn that the risk of the virus remains, especially with new variants.
Close
A screengrab from a video clip shared by the Chinese foreign ministry and tweeted by CGTN, which shows spokespersons using the “fist and palm” salute to extend greetings ahead of the Chinese New Year in February 2021. (SCREENGRAB/ TWITTER)
A screengrab from a video clip shared by the Chinese foreign ministry and tweeted by CGTN, which shows spokespersons using the “fist and palm” salute to extend greetings ahead of the Chinese New Year in February 2021. (SCREENGRAB/ TWITTER)

Adviser urges China govt to use ‘fist and palm’ salute in times of pandemic

By Sutirtho Patranobis
UPDATED ON MAR 08, 2021 11:55 PM IST
Han Fangming, vice chairperson of the foreign affairs committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, argued that the traditional greeting fits the changing lifestyles
Close
Canada's Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau.(File Photo / REUTERS)
Canada's Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau.(File Photo / REUTERS)

Trudeau names task force on women in the economy ahead of Budget

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 09:58 PM IST
Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland and Minister of Middle Class Prosperity Mona Fortier said Monday the group will harness expert voices across the country to help the government with a plan to address gender equality issues laid bare by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Close
Britain has so far taken a light-touch approach to imports from the EU since Brexit, waiving customs requirements and allowing goods to enter freely. (Representative Image)(AP)
Britain has so far taken a light-touch approach to imports from the EU since Brexit, waiving customs requirements and allowing goods to enter freely. (Representative Image)(AP)

UK mulls postponing Brexit border checks on food

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 08:48 PM IST
David Frost, the minister who negotiated the Brexit trade deal with the EU and is now leading the UK’s relations with the bloc, has asked officials to review the timetable of the new border paperwork requirements, which are due to start from April 1, according to two people familiar with the matter.
Close
A man holds a baby at the Klong Toey fresh market after it was temporarily shut down amid the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak in Bangkok, Thailand. (Reuters)
A man holds a baby at the Klong Toey fresh market after it was temporarily shut down amid the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak in Bangkok, Thailand. (Reuters)

Thailand to cut quarantine for vaccinated foreigners to 7 days from April

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 08:48 PM IST
  • Vaccinations must be administered within three months of the travel period and travellers will be required to show negative Covid-19 test results.
Close
People gather in a demonstration to mark International Women's Day, despite of being banned by local authorities due to COVID-19 restrictions, at Puerta del Sol square in Madrid, Spain, March 8, 2021. The sign reads: "We do not fight together, they will kill us separately". REUTERS/Sergio Perez(REUTERS)
People gather in a demonstration to mark International Women's Day, despite of being banned by local authorities due to COVID-19 restrictions, at Puerta del Sol square in Madrid, Spain, March 8, 2021. The sign reads: "We do not fight together, they will kill us separately". REUTERS/Sergio Perez(REUTERS)

Defying pandemic, feminists in Spain decry far-right attacks

AP
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 08:47 PM IST
  • Spain’s Constitutional Court on Monday rejected last-minute appeals by unions and women’s rights groups to hold any kind of street protest in the Spanish capital, following similar recent rulings by lower-level courts.
Close
Detroit police monitor the scene of a shooting at the Rivertown Inn and Suites on East Jefferson Avenue in Detroit.(AP)
Detroit police monitor the scene of a shooting at the Rivertown Inn and Suites on East Jefferson Avenue in Detroit.(AP)

Man linked to 3 Ohio homicides dies after Detroit shooting

AP
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 08:46 PM IST
  • Chandra Moore, 55, died Friday, Detroit police Sgt. Nicole Kirkwood said.
Close
A healthcare worker pick up a Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine as she prepares to administers a dose to a health staff member at a vaccination center at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in Soweto, South Africa,(AP)
A healthcare worker pick up a Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine as she prepares to administers a dose to a health staff member at a vaccination center at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in Soweto, South Africa,(AP)

South Africans invested most in 55 years as Covid-19 crisis raged

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 08:45 PM IST
  • The country’s collective investment scheme industry saw net annual inflows of 213 billion rand ($13.8 billion) in 2020, according to statistics released by the Association for Savings and Investment South Africa on Monday. That was the highest figure since 1965.
Close
Von der Leyen said things were improving in the EU, where monthly vaccine production is to be doubled. The commission sees output of 90 million to 100 million doses a month by the end of March. (Representative Image)(AFP)
Von der Leyen said things were improving in the EU, where monthly vaccine production is to be doubled. The commission sees output of 90 million to 100 million doses a month by the end of March. (Representative Image)(AFP)

EU says it’s tired of being a scapegoat for slow vaccines

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 08:40 PM IST
In a blistering counter-attack against criticism over the European Union’s sluggish Covid-19 vaccination program, von der Leyen refocused blame on manufacturers, notably AstraZeneca Plc, which she said hadn’t stockpiled doses as it started producing in Europe.
Close
Some 130 people were killed and 350 wounded in a night of carnage on November 13, 2015.(AP file photo. Representative image)
Some 130 people were killed and 350 wounded in a night of carnage on November 13, 2015.(AP file photo. Representative image)

Italy arrests Algerian national over links to 2015 Paris attack

Posted by Harshit Sabarwal | AFP
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 08:38 PM IST
The man, identified by La Repubblica newspaper as Athmane Touami, is alleged to have "guaranteed the availability of forged documents" to the Paris attackers, police said.
Close
General view of vaccine recipients waiting at Messe Wien Congress Center, which has been set up as a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination centre, in Vienna, Austria(AFP)
General view of vaccine recipients waiting at Messe Wien Congress Center, which has been set up as a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination centre, in Vienna, Austria(AFP)

Austria stops using doses of one batch of AstraZeneca vaccine after nurse death

AFP, Vienna
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 08:27 PM IST
  • The decision had been taken as a precaution, the National Office for Health System Safety (BASG) said late on Sunday, adding that there was "no evidence of a causal link" between the jab and the woman's death.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP