TEHRAN, Iran (AA) – Iran has warned that the European Parliament’s push to classify the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist organization is an attack on the country’s national security.
Speaking at a weekly press conference in Tehran, Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani said any hostile act against the elite force would be met with a “decisive response”
In a non-binding vote last week, the European Parliament condemned the IRGC for its crackdown on protesters during months of demonstrations and for supplying drones to Russia for use in Ukraine.
Members of European Parliament voted overwhelmingly in favor of a resolution calling on the EU and its member states to place the IRGC on the EU terror list, prompting strong reactions from Tehran.
However, it is reportedly unlikely that the resolution will be included in the next round of sanctions against Iranian individuals and entities, which the EU is expected to adopt on Monday.
Kanaani called the European Parliament resolution “irresponsible and illogical” and said European countries had been warned through diplomatic channels.
He said the move violates the charter UN and is an “attack on the security of the Islamic Republic of Iran,” warning of the negative consequences.
Iran has “the necessary will to respond” and European countries should not “impose more than this cost on bilateral relations,” the spokesman said.
His remarks came a day after the Iranian parliament warned of a “firm and prompt” response should the European Parliament add the IRGC to its list of ‘terrorist groups.’
The closed session of the assembly, chaired by Parliament Speaker Baqer Qalibaf, was also attended by Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and IRGC chief Gen. Hossein Salami.
Qalibaf said that European forces stationed in the region would be classified as “terrorist groups” if the IRGC were blacklisted, and called on Western countries “not to close the window of diplomacy”
According to Iran, classifying the elite force as a terrorist organization would be a “completely illegal” step, as it is the official military branch of the Iranian government.
While the IRGC is classified by the U.S. as a “foreign terrorist organization,” European countries have been reluctant to take action against it because of legal problems.
The issue has returned to the spotlight in recent months in the wake of protests in Iran sparked by the death of a young woman in police custody, as well as reports of Iranian drone deliveries to close ally Russia.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen also announced last week her support for blacklisting the IRGC after senior officials from France, the United Kingdom, and Germany said they would consider the move.
In a telephone conversation with EU foreign affairs envoy Josep Borrell on Thursday, Amir-Abdollahian called the push to blacklist the IRGC “inappropriate,” adding that the European Parliament had “shot itself in the foot” by doing so.