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Inclusive referendum, not military option, can put an end to Israeli regime: Iran

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Saeed Khatibzadeh addresses the 48th Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Islamabad, Pakistan, on March 23, 2022. (Photo by Iranian Foreign Ministry)

Iran’s deputy foreign minister says the Israeli regime can be annihilated not militarily or through already failed options, but by holding a referendum involving all the people of Palestine, including those who were forced out of their homeland.

In a statement to the 48th Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Wednesday, Saeed Khatibzadeh said instability in the West Asia region is deeply rooted in the issue of Palestine and the systematic occupation of Palestinian territories by the Zionists.

Describing the Israeli regime as the only example of “apartheid” in today’s world, Khatibzadeh emphasized that the OIC was founded on the cause of Palestine, adding that the return of all Palestinian refugees to their homeland and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with al-Quds as its capital should remain the highest priority of the organization.

He also censured the Arab countries that normalized their relations with the Israeli regime, saying the normalization of Israel’s ties with Islamic countries is a “colonial policy” pursued by Israel and its main sponsor, the United States of America.

“This is happening while the OIC has always firmly rejected any form of normalization of relations with this apartheid regime,” he said.

“Therefore, the OIC should emphasize its permanent position on the firm opposition to any form of compromise against the advancement of the sinister policy of normalization and take tangible steps against this plague for unity and the welfare of the Islamic Ummah (community), and prohibit further infiltration of the Zionist regime in the Islamic world,” Khatibzadeh added.

He then reiterated Iran’s proposal called “Holding a National Referendum in Palestine” so that the people of Palestine would be able to decide their destiny.

“We believe that the end of the Zionist regime is achievable not through the military solution or the implementation of already failed political initiatives, but through holding a genuine referendum, involving all inhabitants of occupied Palestine and all Palestinian expatriates driven out from their homeland, with every religious or political background,” the Iranian spokesman said.

By failed political initiatives, Khatibzadeh was apparently referring to the so-called two-state solution.

Iran has time and again criticized the so-called two-state solution and supported an initiative aimed to secure the freedom of the entirety of Palestine, rather than part of it.

Also, observers say the two-state solution has already failed due to the Israeli regime’s continuation of building more illegal settlements.

‘Afghan calamity rooted in US policies’

Elsewhere in his statement, Khatibzadeh referred to the issue of Afghanistan, saying the country is facing political, social, economic, security, and humanitarian crises which are the immediate result of failed policies and irresponsible, miscalculated, and unilateral actions of the US during the past two decades.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran views the stability in Kabul as the stability in Tehran and has spared no efforts it could to bring peace and tranquility in Afghanistan, before and after the fall of the former government in the country,” he remarked.

According to Khatibzadeh, Western countries have caused calamitous damage to Afghanistan by adopting a policy of famine and hunger through their sanctions and seizure of the Afghan nation’s assets, which “led to the mass migration to the neighboring countries, especially the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

“We express our concern towards the dire economic and humanitarian situation in Afghanistan and view this as a proper ground for the recruitment of terrorist combatants by terrorist groups, in particular Daesh, in Afghanistan,” he added.

Concluding his remarks, Khatibzadeh wished that the meeting would unify Muslim nations to isolate and ultimately defeat the occupying Israeli regime and also take effective steps to “alleviate the problems and sufferings of our Afghan brothers.”


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