Iranian leader says ‘resistance’ will respond if Israeli crimes continue

Ayatollah Khamenei. Pic: AA

Iranian leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has given the strongest indication yet that Iranian-sponsored forces will get involved in the Palestine-Israel war.

Speaking on Tuesday, he said that “if Israeli crimes against Palestinians in Gaza continue, no one can stop Muslims and resistance forces.”

Ayatollah Khamenei said that claims by some countries that the Palestinians have killed civilians are false as all those living in settlements across the occupied territories are armed.

“Now let’s suppose that they are civilians. How many civilians were killed? This occupying regime is killing a hundred times more civilians; women, children, the elderly and youth. The armed forces are not living in Gaza buildings. They are in their own place. They (the Israelis) know it too. These are all people. They choose crowded sites and hit them… The occupying government of the Zionist regime must be put on trial today.”

Elsewhere in his remarks, the Iranian leader urged scholars not to remain indifferent towards the situation in Gaza.

“Today, in the case of Gaza, all of us have the responsibility to react. We must show a reaction. Some people are hungry, some are under bombardment, and some are being martyred in hundreds. A scholar, a university, or a seminary scholar must try to recognize the truth and stand by it. Looking indifferently [at issues] is not permissible for scholars and scientists.”

Yesterday Iran’s Foreign Minister said that if the Israeli regime’s crimes in the Gaza Strip continue and no political solution is found, the door will be open to whatever possibility, including preemptive measures by the “resistance front.”

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Hossein Amir-Abdollahian made the remarks following a regional tour that took him to Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, and Qatar.

“During my regional trip and meetings that I had with leaders of the resistance front, they believed that an opportunity should be given to political solutions” to end Israel’s brutal strikes against the fully blockaded Gaza Strip.

“However, in the event that the Israeli regime’s war crimes against civilians continue, any possibility is likely,” the foreign minister noted.

Noting that all scenarios are open to the resistance groups, including the Lebanese Hezbollah movement, Iran’s top diplomat said they have taken all considerations into account in their calculations.

“The resistance leaders will not allow the Zionist regime to do whatever [it wants] in the region,” Iran’s foreign minister said, warning, “Every preemptive measure is conceivable in the coming hours.”

“If we do not defend Gaza today, we would have to defend our [own] cities,” the top diplomat said, citing Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah as saying that if the movement did not resort to preemptive action against Israel, “tomorrow, we would have to fight off the Zionist forces in Beirut.”

A funeral for Hezbollah fighters killed by Israel. Pic: AA

“The issue at hand is that what has happened [in the occupied territories] has been an earthquake in [the ranks of] the Zionist regime,” Amir-Abdollahian said, referring to Operation al-Aqsa Storm, which has left some 1,400 Israelis dead and more than 200 others captive.

The Iranian foreign minister then cited his earlier discussions with some of his counterparts from Muslim countries.

“We have reached the conclusion that if limited and narrow possibilities available to the United Nations are not taken advantage of, the possibility of opening new fronts against the [Israeli] regime is inevitable,” Amir-Abdollahian said.

He added that an extensive war against Israel by the resistance front “will change the geographical map of the al-Quds occupying regime.”

Iran’s top diplomat also censured the United States for urging self-restraint in the ongoing war on Gaza, while supporting the Israeli regime at the same time.

“We have clearly told the American sides, and I announce [here] that they cannot call on all parties to show self-restraint, but offer their full support to the Israeli criminals,” Amir-Abdollahian said.

“The time for America [to send] such messages is coming to an end,” he said, adding, “I warn you to stop the bloodshed of women and children [in Gaza] instead of sending hypocritical messages.”

Meanwhile, three Israelis in northern Israel were injured by fire from an anti-tank guided missile launched from Lebanon.

The Times of Israel website said the injured people were lightly wounded and were taken to hospital for treatment.

In response, the Israeli army said it fired artillery shells on a location in Lebanon that fired anti-tank guided missiles toward Israeli territory.

Early on Tuesday, the Israeli army said it had killed a cell of four “infiltrators” who tried to cross into Israel.

In a statement, the Israeli army said the incident took place near the northern settlement of Hanita, but no injuries were reported on the Israeli side.

Since the start of the conflict on October 7, tensions have flared along the Israeli-Lebanese border, with Israeli forces and the Hezbollah group exchanging fire.

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