BURGAS, Bulgaria — A senior American official confirmed Israel’s assertions on Thursday that the suicide bomber who killed five Israelis in an attack here on Wednesday was a member of a Hezbollah cell operating in Bulgaria.
The official said the current American intelligence assessment is that the bomber was “acting under broad guidance” to hit Israeli targets when the opportunity presented itself. That guidance was given to Hezbollah, a Lebanese militant group, by its primary sponsor, Iran, he said.
The attacks, the official said, were in retaliation for the assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists by Israeli agents, something that Israel has neither confirmed nor denied. “This was tit for tat,” said the American official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the investigation was still underway.
The bombing comes at a time of heightened tensions over Iran’s nuclear program, which Tehran says is for peaceful purposes but Israel and the West say is a cover for developing weapons. Iran has sworn to exact revenge for a series of assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists that it blames on Israel, which has neither confirmed nor denied its role.
A senior Israeli official said on Thursday that the Burgas attack was part of an intensive wave of terrorist attacks around the world carried out by two different organizations, the Iranian Quds Force, an elite international operations unit within Iran’s Islamic Revolutionar… >>>