Iran Protests Egypt MPs’ Presence at Opposition Rally

A woman holds a picture of Maryam Rajavi, president elect of National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) during a demonstration denouncing Iran's use of the death penalty, on the occasion of the official visit to France by the Iranian President on January 28, 2016 in Paris.

TEHRAN (AFP) –  Iran has summoned Egypt’s top envoy in Tehran to “strongly protest” against the attendance of Egyptian lawmakers at an annual rally of an exiled opposition group, state media said.

An Iranian foreign ministry official called the presence of “a number of Egyptian MPs” at the National Council of Resistance in Iran (NCRI) gathering in France on Saturday “a clear interference in our domestic affairs”.

Tehran accused the unidentified parliamentarians of supporting the “terrorist group”, which includes the former rebel People’s Mujahedeen of Iran (MEK).

“Egyptian authorities are expected to adopt responsible and principled policies and take steps toward preserving peace and stability in the region,” the Iranian official said, quoted late Wednesday by the official IRNA news agency.

It did not identify the envoy but Egypt’s diplomatic mission in Tehran is headed by Khalid Emara.

Tehran broke off diplomatic relations with Cairo in 1980 a year after Iran’s Islamic revolution, in protest at Egypt’s signing of a peace treaty with Israel and hosting of the deposed shah.

The two countries maintain only interests sections in each other’s capitals.

The envoy for his part stressed that Egypt does not meddle in the domestic affairs of other countries, IRNA reported.

Tehran has also summoned the French ambassador over the annual rally held at Le Bourget, near Paris, by the NCRI, which said that 100,000 Iranians had attended.