US Accuses Iran of 'Secret Deal' with al-Qaida

July 28, 2011 - 1:14 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration is accusing the Iranian government of entering into a "secret deal" with al-Qaida to funnel money and insurgents from the Middle East to Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The Treasury says Iran has allowed al-Qaida operatives to build a "core pipeline" to funnel cash and extremists to the front lines. It says Iran had become a "critical transit point" for money and recruits, and slapped sanctions on six alleged al-Qaida agents.

They include an Iran-based member allegedly operating with the permission of authorities in Tehran. The sanctions freeze any assets the six may have in the U.S. and ban Americans from commercial or financial transactions with them.

Treasury said its exposure of the deal and the sanctions would further set back Iran and al-Qaida's extremist agenda.