APNewsBreak: Israel: Thai Bombs Like India Attack

Published February 15, 2012 8:45AM (EST)

BANGKOK (AP) — The homemade bombs discovered in a Bangkok house after a series of blasts in the city were similar to devices used against Israeli Embassy targets in India and Georgia, Israel's ambassador said Wednesday, building on his country's claims the incidents are part of a covert terror campaign by Iran.

Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast called the allegations against it "baseless," saying Israel was trying to damage its relations with Thailand.

Thai authorities are interrogating two Iranians who were arrested Tuesday after explosives ignited, apparently by accident, in a house they were renting in Bangkok.

On Wednesday, Thai immigration police chief Lt. Gen. Wiboon Bangthamai said a third suspect who fled the destroyed house was in Malaysia after boarding a flight bound for Kuala Lumpur Tuesday night. He identified the man as Zedhaghat Zadech Masoud, but had no other details.

Israel has accused Iran of waging a campaign of state terror and has threatened military strikes on Iranian nuclear facilities. Iran has blamed the Jewish state for the recent killings of Iranian atomic scientists and has denied responsibility for all three plots this week.

On Monday in New Delhi, an explosion tore through an Israeli diplomat's car, wounding the driver and a diplomat's wife, according to Indian officials. Authorities in the former Soviet republic of Georgia say an explosive device was planted on the car of a driver for the Israeli Embassy the same day, but it was discovered and defused before it went off.

Israeli Ambassador Itzhak Shoham told The Associated Press that Thai police found and defused two magnetic bombs that could be stuck on vehicles after Tuesday' blasts.

"They are similar to the ones used in Delhi and in Tbilisi," Shoham said. "From that we can assume that there is the same network of terror."

That, and the arrest of two Iranians in Thailand "again leaves not too much room to assume who was behind it," Shoham said.


Associated Press writers Ravi Nessman in New Delhi, Jocelyn Gecker in Bangkok and Ali Akbar Dareini in Tehran contributed to this report.

By Salon Staff

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