led by America are determined to ignore the main source of
Takfiri-Wahhabi terrorism and extremism," foreign ministry
spokesman Bahram Ghasemi was quoted by Iran's state news agency
IRNA as saying.
He was referring to hardline Sunni Muslim groups and Saudi
Arabia's official Wahhabi school of Islam.
Saudi Arabia denies backing terrorism and has cracked down on
jihadists at home, jailing thousands, stopping hundreds from
traveling to fight abroad and cutting militant finances.
Shi'ite Muslim power Iran and Saudi Arabia, bastion of Sunni
Islam and a close U.S. ally, are longstanding religious and
political arch rivals and often accused each other of backing
terrorism. Relations are fraught as they back each other's foes
in regional wars such as in Yemen, Iraq and Syria.
"Giving a wrong address when referring to the roots and the
financial and intellectual resources of terrorism is a main
reason for a lack of success by international anti-terror
efforts," Ghasemi added.
Ghasemi was reacting to remarks by Mattis on Friday when he was
asked about comments he made in 2012 that the three main threats
the United States faced were "Iran, Iran, Iran".
"At the time when I spoke about Iran I was a commander of U.S.
Central Command and that (Iran) was the primary exporter of
terrorism, frankly, it was the primary state sponsor of
terrorism and it continues that kind of behavior today," Mattis
(Reporting by Dubai newsroom; editing by Alexander Smith)
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