Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard says its agents have dismantled an alleged espionage network with links to foreign intelligence agencies seeking to sabotage key industrial and military sites in the country.
The Guard's website says members of the group were identified outside Iran and arrested after entering the country. It said authorities confiscated equipment including roadside and magnetic bombs as well as coded communications equipment. The arrests were made in Iran's oil-rich Khuzestan province, which borders Iraq.
Monday's report didn't provide further details but said those arrested have confessed to their links to intelligence agencies backed by Iran's "ultra-regional enemies" — a reference to the United States. The report said the group had planned to sabotage and bomb key facilities.
A month ago, Iran announced that the formidable Guard has significantly bolstered its defense capabilities by obtaining multiple-warhead missiles.
The Revolutionary Guard has played a major role in suppressing the public uprisings that swept Iran following the 2009 elections, which opposition contested were fraudulent. Along with its paramilitary arm, the Basij, the Guard was reportedly responsible for purging political dissidents and clamping down on pro-reform activists.
Reports by India Police have also linked the Guard with the 2012 attack on the Israeli embassy in New Delhi.
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