United States police arrested two men on Wednesday (23 July) and were searching for another, in connection with the assassination of a former Iranian diplomat who was an outspoken critic of Ayatollah Ruhollah Komeini.
CU INTERIOR Ali Tabatabai.
CU Mr. Ali Tabatabai speaking in English, (file 19 Nov, 1979).
GV EXTERIOR Police around Mr. Tabatabai's home in Bethesda, Maryland, USA. (2 SHOTS)
GV Hospital in Washington, DC.
GV & SV House with damaged window in Bethesda. (2 SHOTS)
GV Unidentified house painter being taken into custody by police.
CU & SV Post Office Jeep. (5 SHOTS)
GV & SV FBI agents moving around Mr. Tabatabai's house. (2 SHOTS)
LEWIS: "Tabatabi's organisation, the Iran Freedom Foundation, opposes the Khomeini regime and favours and return of ousted Prime Minister, Shapur Bakhtiar. Because of that, Tabatabai said he had received death threats."
TABATABAI: "They have, they have left messages, numerous messages of threats of physical harm to me that very clearly said we are going to kill you."
LEWIS: "Shortly before noon today, the threats became a reality. Tabatabai was shot at his home in the Washington suburb of Bethesda, Maryland.
"He was taken to a hospital where he died about half an hour later.
"Another Iranian living in the house heard the shots and jumped through a window to escape, cutting his foot badly. Two others living there were unhurt.
"Another man who saw the shooting, an unidentified house painter, was taken into protective custody by police.
"According to the witness, the gunman was dressed in a mail carrier's uniform and fled in a Post Office Jeep. Police later found the vehicle, abandoned a few blocks away from the scene of the shooting. The man who usually drives it was being questioned. Public would not say whether he is considered a suspect.
"The FBI has entered the case, looking for possible violations of federal anti-terrorism laws. Investigators are concerned that this could be part of a planned series of assassinations by agents of the Khomeini regime. George Lewis, NBC News, Bethesda, Maryland."
COMMENTARY: GEORGE IEWIS
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: United States police arrested two men on Wednesday (23 July) and were searching for another, in connection with the assassination of a former Iranian diplomat who was an outspoken critic of Ayatollah Ruhollah Komeini. The men have been charged with conspiracy in the murder of Mr. Ali Tabatabai who was shot at his home in the Washington suburb of Bethesda, by an attacker posing as a postman. Those charged - both believed to be United States citizens- were arrested soon after the NBC's George Lewis compiled this report.