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FIRST ON FOX: Former UN ambassador Nikki Haley calls on the Biden administration to deny Iran’s president a visa to attend the UN General Assembly next month – after it emerged Iranian operatives had plotted to kill senior US officials.
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi is seeking a visa to attend the gathering of world leaders in New York next month. But after the Justice Department announced charges against a member of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) for an alleged plot to kill former national security adviser John Bolton, Haley said that this application should be dismissed.
“The world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism attempted to assassinate American officials inside our country,” Haley said in a statement to Fox News Digital. “Under no circumstances should the Biden administration allow Raisi to set foot in our country.”
“He shouldn’t be allowed to stain American soil,” she added.
BOLTON CALLS IRAN’S ASSASSINATION PLOT AN ‘ACT OF WAR’, CALLS ON BIDEN ADMINISTRATION TO ‘END’ NUCLEAR TALKS
Shahram Poursafi is wanted by the FBI for the alleged plot to kill Bolton, which officials say was likely planned in retaliation for the January 2020 strike that killed IRGC Quds Force chief Qassem Soleimani.
“Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, through the defendant, attempted a shameless plot to assassinate a former US official on US soil in retaliation for US actions,” the official said on Wednesday. U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves of the District of Columbia.
Poursafi allegedly used encrypted messaging apps to offer $300,000 to hire someone to assassinate Bolton, and hinted at a $1 million offer for future “employment”. Reports have since surfaced that former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, another prominent Iranian hawk, was also a target.
“It’s not just me,” Bolton said in an interview with Fox News Digital this week. “The regime in Tehran has targeted a lot of Americans.”
He added: “You could call it an act of war, and it tells you everything you need to know about the government in Tehran.”
Bolton had accused the Biden administration of “signalling weakness” toward the Tehran regime.
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Earlier this month, seven Republican senators called on President Biden to deny Raisi a visa, while noting that the United States had refused to grant visas to the Iranian ambassador to the UN in 2014 and to the Iranian Foreign Minister in 2020.
Haley has frequently criticized the Biden administration’s stance on Iran, particularly its moves to re-enter the 2015 Iran nuclear deal – from which the Trump administration withdrew. Last month, she said pursuing a renewed deal was “a slap in the face for Israel and our Arab allies, and dangerous for America.”
Fox News’ Brooke Singman contributed to this report.