A lawmaker in Iran is reportedly pledging $3 million to anyone who assassinates President Donald Trump. According to Reuters, Ahmad Hamzeh made the shocking offer in front of the Iranian parliament, indicating that relations between the U.S. and the Middle Eastern country are still on shaky ground.
It’s not clear if the offer has any official backing from Iranian rulers, but the comments appeared on the state-run ISNA news outlet.
“On behalf of the people of Kerman province, we will pay a $3 million reward in cash to whoever kills Trump,” Hamzeh said.
Kerman was the hometown of Qassem Soleimani, the Iranian military leader whose killing by drone strike touched off increased tensions between the U.S. and Iran. The strike, which took place near Baghdad International Airport in Iraq on January 3, was reportedly ordered by Trump.
The strike prompted Iran to fire missiles at several U.S. military sites in the Middle East and purportedly resulted in a passenger jet being shot out of the air after Iran mistakenly believed the airliner was an incoming missile from the U.S. in retaliation for the attack.
Iran blamed the mistake on the U.S., a sentiment echoed by other prominent world leaders, such as Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
“And that’s why this first step of admission of responsibility is an important one by Iran but there are many other questions like that one that will need clear answers to in the coming days and weeks,” Trudeau said.
The Iranian lawmaker went on to argue that if the country had nuclear weapons, they wouldn’t be in the position that they are in right now.
“If we had nuclear weapons today, we would be protected from threats… We should put the production of long-range missiles capable of carrying unconventional warheads on our agenda. This is our natural right,” he said.
Iran’s desire to have nuclear weapons has been a major topic of concern not just for the Trump administration but for previous administrations as well. The United States has accused the country of attempting to obtain or build nuclear arms, while Iranian leaders say that they have not and will not attempt to build a nuclear arsenal.
Iran has conducted nuclear work, but they insist that its purpose is for research and to generate electricity.
In 2015, an accord was reached that aimed at making it take longer for Iran to obtain the material it needs to create a bomb. However, Washington withdrew from the pact, and Iran has gradually stepped away from the deal.