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International News: Iran warns Israel of regional escalation over Palestinian aggressions

Posted: Sunday, October 15, 2023. 6:08 pm CST.

By Horace Palacio: Iran has issued a stern warning to Israel, cautioning that continued aggressions against Palestinians may lead to regional escalation. The semi-official Fars news agency relayed remarks from Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian on Sunday: “If the Zionist aggressions do not stop, the hands of all parties in the region are on the trigger.”

This statement came shortly after Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, pledged to “demolish Hamas,” intensifying preparations for a military move into the Gaza Strip in response to a wave of attacks by Islamist militants on Israeli border towns.

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei of Iran, the country’s top authority, clarified on Tuesday that Tehran was not involved in the militant Hamas group’s assault on Israel. However, he praised what he termed as Israel’s “irreparable” military and intelligence failure. Israel has persistently alleged that Iran’s clerical leadership instigates violence by arming Hamas. However, Tehran counters this claim, stating that its support for the group, that governs the Gaza Strip, is solely moral and financial.

Supporting the Palestinian cause remains a foundational principle of the Islamic Republic, established after the 1979 revolution. It’s one of the ways the Shi’ite-majority nation has positioned itself as a figurehead in the Muslim world. Just last week, Amiabdollahian criticized Israel for allegedly aiming for “genocide” by imposing a blockade on the Gaza Strip. He further warned that any assault on Gaza might incite “new fronts of resistance” across the Middle East.

Highlighting the wider implications, Amirabdollahian stated, “The responsibility for the possible opening of new fronts of resistance in the region and any escalation of today’s war directly falls on the United States and the Zionist regime (Israel).”

In a significant meeting over the weekend, Amirabdollahian convened with Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Qatar. The two discussed the recent deadly attack on Israel and mutually agreed to “continue cooperation” to further the group’s objectives, as revealed in a statement by the Iran-supported Hamas.

In related diplomatic moves, Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi recently reached out to French President Emmanuel Macron. Raisi appealed to France to step in and “prevent oppression” of Palestinians during their phone conversation.

 

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