In the midst of a big diplomatic crisis over statements made by members of the ruling BJP about the Prophet Muhammad, Iran appears to have modified its narration of its Foreign Minister’s meeting with National Security Advisor Ajit Doval in Delhi today by removing parts of an earlier press statement.

According to an earlier Iranian statement, Doval informed Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian that individuals who made the contentious remarks against the Prophet “will be taught a lesson.” This line is no longer included on the website of the Iranian Foreign Ministry.

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Iranian Foreign Minister Abdollahian is the country’s first major visitor since Kuwait, Qatar, and other Gulf nations condemned the Prophet remarks.

Following the meeting last night, the minister tweeted, “Pleased to meet PM Modi, FM Jaishankar and other Indian officials to advance our bilateral strategic dialogue. Tehran & New Delhi agree on the need to respect divine religions & Islamic sanctities & to avoid divisive statements. determined to bring relations to new heights.” 

According to a spokesperson for the External Affairs Ministry, the Prophet remarks were never brought up in conversations with Foreign Minister S Jaishankar. “We have made it pretty clear the tweets and comments do not convey the views of the government. This has been conveyed to our interlocutors as also the fact that action has been taken by the concerned quarters against those who made the comments and tweets. I really do not have anything additional to say on this,” the official affirmed.

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News agency PTI reported according to an earlier Iranian readout, Abdollahian raised the problem of the “negative atmosphere” created by “disrespectful” comments about the Prophet, and the Indian side underlined the Indian government’s respect for the Prophet.

According to PTI, the Iranian foreign minister also mentioned the country’s historical friendship amongst followers of many religions.

“Abdollahian hailed the Indian people and government for their respect for the divine faiths, especially the Prophet Mohammad and also for the religious tolerance, historical coexistence and friendship among followers of various religions in the country,” the readout highlighted.

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“Muslims are satisfied with the stance of Indian officials in dealing with the culprits,” stated Iran’s foreign minister.

The BJP suspended Nupur Sharma, its national spokesperson, and removed the party’s media head in Delhi, Naveen Jindal, on Sunday, over their remarks on the Prophet.

Several countries condemned the comments, including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Indonesia, Jordan, Bahrain, the Maldives, Malaysia, Oman, Iraq, and Libya, and many called Indian envoys to demonstrate their outrage.

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Abdollahian told Iran’s IRNA news agency ahead of the talks that his travel to India is taking place in a context in which a member of a party “insulted” Prophet Muhammad in an arbitrary act.

According to IRNA, he stated that India has “constantly followed up peaceful coexistence and tried to live in peace and tranquillity” and that “Muslims cannot tolerate the sacrilege of the Prophet of Islam at all.”