Israel accuses Iran of anti-Semitism after drug speech
(Reuters) - Iranian allegations that Zionists were inciting drug trafficking and Jewish religious law called for annihilation of gentiles prompted a sharp response from Israel on Wednesday which said Iran was governed by fanatical anti-Semites.
The verbal clash highlighted festering tension in an international stand-off over Tehran's nuclear program.
A third round of nuclear talks between world powers and Iran 10 days ago failed to resolve the stalemate. With that process seemingly close to collapse, Israel renewed veiled threats of military action against Iranian nuclear production sites, which it deems a mortal threat.
While Iran and Israel have traded hostile rhetoric for years, the remarks at a United Nations global drug enforcement conference in Tehran by Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi seemed unusually inflammatory to Western delegates.
Speaking on Tuesday, Rahimi said the Talmud, or canon of Jewish religious law, "teaches them how to destroy non-Jews so as to protect an embryo in the womb of a Jewish mother", according to excerpts published by the Fars news agency.
VIENNA | Tue Jul 3, 2012 7:32am EDT
(Reuters) - The U.N. drugs watchdog chief voiced "dismay and serious concern" in talks with an Iranian envoy on Tuesday over allegations by a senior government official in the Islamic state that Zionists were inciting narcotics trafficking.
Yury Fedotov, head of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, called for the meeting with the Iranian diplomat after "the anti-Semitic comments" of Iranian Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi, Fedotov's spokesman said.