CARACAS, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- Venezuela on Wednesday blamed the United States for destabilizing Iran by instigating violent protests in the Asian country.
The Venezuelan Foreign Ministry said in a statement that Venezuela rejects the destabilization attempts "promoted by the government of the United States against the government and people of Iran."
"Venezuela is surprised that a group of countries led by the North American Empire are echoing a campaign to divide and spread violence among Iranians, in contravention of the fundamental norms of peace, non-interference and respect for sovereignty," the foreign ministry said.
Venezuela also expressed its solidarity with Iran "for its fight for the consolidation of the Islamic Revolution."
During the annual Ashura commemoration by Shiite Muslims on Sunday, anti-government protestors clashed with security forces in Tehran. The riot led to eight deaths.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Tuesday that Sunday's anti-government protests in Tehran were plays staged by Israel and the United States.
U.S. prepares sanctions against Iran: report
WASHINGTON, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- The United States is readying sanctions against Iran, possibly targeting the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, local media reported on Wednesday.
As a year-end deadline for Iran to engage with world powers on its nuclear program looms, the Obama administration has determined Iran is unlikely to change its refusal to cooperate, and is now deciding on the precise contours of sanctions, The Washington Post quoted unnamed administration officials as saying. Full story
No more tolerance with anti-gov't rioters: Iran's police chief
People gather for a protest against opposition demonstrations in Teheran, capital of Iran, Dec. 30, 2009. (Xinhua/Ahmad Halabisaz)
TEHRAN, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- Iran's police chief Esmail Ahmadi-Moqaddam said on Wednesday that there would be no more tolerance with the anti-government "rioters" and "destructors," the semi-official ISNA news agency reported. Full story
Government supporters hold rally in Tehran
An Iranian opposition supporter holds a policeman during clashes in central Tehran December 27, 2009.(Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
TEHRAN, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- Hundreds of thousands of government supporters took to streets across the country on Wednesday to protest against the Sunday "riots" in Tehran. Full story