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Palestinians’ anti-Israel operation 'legitimate defense' against decades of occupation: Iran's UN mission

A firefighter douses a car blaze in the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon after a rocket attack from Gaza on October 9, 2023. (Photo by AFP)

Iran’s mission to the United Nations says Operation Al-Aqsa Storm is a “legitimate defense” against decades of Israeli occupation, rejecting allegations that Tehran had a role in the large-scale military operation against the Tel Aviv regime.               

In a statement on Monday, the mission said Iran continues its unflinching support for Palestine, amid ongoing massive operation by Palestinian Hamas resistance movement against Israel.

It emphasized that Iran is not involved in Palestine’s Operation Al-Aqsa Storm because it has been "taken solely by Palestine itself."

"The resolute measures taken by Palestine constitute a wholly legitimate defense against seven decades of oppressive occupation and heinous crimes committed by the illegitimate Zionist regime,” the mission said.

It noted that the Palestinian resistance acts independently in its decisions, which are "unwaveringly in line with the legitimate interests of the Palestinian people."

"While recognizing the inherent right of self-defense for all Palestinians under international law, the Islamic Republic of Iran remains steadfast in its belief that the question of Palestine can only be resolved by ending the occupation, recognizing the inalienable rights of self- determination of the Palestinian people and through holding a national referendum with the participation of all Palestinian people, which requires the full restoration and protection of these rights, leading to the establishment of Palestinian sovereignty over entire Palestine," it added.

It also criticized the international community for failing to respond adequately or hold accountable those responsible for the ongoing grave and serious violations.

"The absence of accountability and the unsettling silence of the UN bodies, in particular the Security Council, has allowed decades-old UN resolutions to remain mere words on paper," it said.

According to the statement, the Israeli regime continues to carry out "ever more horrifying atrocities" against the Palestinian people.

"The Islamic Republic of Iran stands firmly behind the aspirations of the Palestinian people and supports the efforts of resistance groups and oppressed Palestinians in their unwavering pursuit of their inherent and indisputable rights against occupation and aggression," it said.

Tehran's support for the Palestinian people is fully consistent with international law and the UN Charter, including the principle of the right to self-determination, the mission said, adding, "This will be Iran’s principled position until the occupation ends."

The statement was issued after The Wall Street Journal claimed that “Iranian security officials helped plan Hamas’s Saturday surprise attack on Israel and gave the green light for the assault at a meeting in Beirut last Monday.”

Operation al-Aqsa Storm, which got underway by the Gaza Strip-based resistance factions on Saturday, is the biggest operation launched by Palestinian groups against the occupying entity in years.

Israeli media outlets say more than 800 Israeli settlers and troops have been killed as a result of the operation. Some 2,560 Israelis have also been injured.

In a phone conversation with Ismail Haniyeh, a Hamas leader, on Sunday, Iran’s President Ebrahim Raeisi said the “steely resolve” of the Palestinians heralds the final victory over the Israeli regime.

“What happened with the glorious operation of the Palestinian fighters in the occupied territories was the realization of the 70-year-old expectation of the Palestinian nation and the Islamic Ummah,” the Iranian president said.

Operation Al-Aqsa Storm result of decades of Israel's occupation: Iran's top rights official

Iran’s top human rights official has also supported the resistance front's measures against Israel, saying the Operation Al-Aqsa Storm was the result of over seven decades of the Tel Aviv regime's occupation, aggression and the martyrdom of more than a hundred thousand innocent Palestinians, including women and children.

"The Palestinian resistance's measures are legitimate defense in the face of the crimes and apartheid of the child-killing Zionist regime," Kazem Gharibabadi, secretary of Iran's High Council for Human Rights, said in a post on his X account on Monday.

He condemned Israel's attacks on Palestine's infrastructure, hospitals and civilians and urged an immediate stop to them.

Israel on Monday stepped up its ferocious pounding of the besieged Gaza Strip as its troops struggled to clear out Hamas fighters more than two days after they burst across the fence from Gaza and overran Israeli bases.

Israeli warplanes bombed a densely populated neighborhood at the Jabalia refugee camp in the occupied West Bank.

Hospital officials in the strip have recorded the death of more than 560 civilians and injury of 2,900 others. A large number of buildings, homes and public facilities have also been badly damaged due to heavy Israeli bombardments.

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