Trump responds to reports of ‘plot’ to kill East London-born diplomat

The US ambassador to SA, Lana Marks, addresses the media before the arrival on August 15 2020 of personal protective equipment worth R6m.
The US ambassador to SA, Lana Marks, addresses the media before the arrival on August 15 2020 of personal protective equipment worth R6m.
Image: SUNDAY TIMES/ ALAISTER RUSSELL

US president Donald Trump warned on Monday that an attack on the US by Iran would be met with an “attack on Iran that will be 1,000 times greater in magnitude”. 

He was responding on Twitter to media reports that there was a plot to kill the US’s East London-born ambassador to SA, Lana Marks.

“According to press reports, Iran may be planning an assassination, or other attack, against the US, in retaliation for terrorist leader Soleimani, which was carried out for his planning a future attack, murdering US troops, and the death and suffering caused over so many years,” he wrote.

“Any attack by Iran, in any form, against the US will be met with an attack on Iran that will be 1,000 times greater in magnitude!”

Qassem Soleimani, the Iranian major general in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, was killed in a US drone strike in January.

Iranian foreign affairs spokesperson Saeed Khatibzadeh  denounced reports of the plot as fabricated news which would likely continue in the future.

Khatibzadeh called on “American officials to stop resorting to hackneyed and worn-out methods for anti-Iran propaganda in the international arena”.

Marks, 66, who is also a friend of Trump’, attended Stirling Primary and matriculated at Clarendon High in 1970.

The state Security Agency (SSA) said on Monday reports of the alleged plot to kill Marks were receiving the necessary attention.

The agency said  it was interacting with partners in SA and abroad to ensure no harm would come to  Marks or any other diplomatic officials inside the country’s borders.

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