Israel chastises US: Delisting IRGC as terror group ‘insult to victims’

“We refuse to believe that the United States would remove its designation as a terrorist organization,” the statement read.

By Atara Beck, World Israel News

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid issued a statement Friday morning in response to reports that the Biden administration is considering removing the Iran Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) from the State Department’s list of terrorist organizations.

“The IRGC are responsible for attacks on American civilians and American forces throughout the Middle East, including in the past year. The IRGC were behind plans to assassinate senior American government officials, “they said.

“The IRGC were involved in the murder of hundreds of thousands of Syrian civilians, they destroyed Lebanon and they are brutally oppressing Iranian civilians. They kill Jews because they are Jews, Christians because they are Christians, and Muslims because they refuse to surrender to them.

“They are an integral part of the brutal machine of oppression in Iran. Their hands have on them the blood of thousands of Iranians and the crushed soul of the Iranian society.”

The statement noted that the IRGC is behind Hezbollah in Lebanon, Islamic Jihad in Gaza, the Houthis in Yemen and the militias in Iraq.

On Wednesday, Axios reported that the U.S. was mulling the delisting of the IRGC from list of terrorist organizations.

According to the report, former Vice President Mike Pence told Israeli officials during a visit last week that the U.S. administration was considering de-listing the IRGC “in return for a more narrow commitment not to target Americans.”

Last month, when Iran made the demand during the Vienna nuclear talks, Lapid quipped, “If the IRGC isn’t a terrorist organization, what are they? A folk dancing troupe?”

“The attempt to delist the IRGC as a terrorist organization is an insult to the victims and would ignore documented reality supported by unequivocal evidence,” Lapid and Bennett said in the Friday statement.

“We find it hard to believe that the IRGC’s designation as a terrorist organization will be removed in exchange for a promise not to harm Americans.”