News   /   Politics   /   Palestine

Iran defense chief warns of Israel's plan to launch ground offensive in Gaza

A rescuer looks on amid debris in the aftermath of Israeli strikes in Gaza City on October 11, 2023. (Photo by Reuters)

Iran's Defense Minister Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Ashtiani has warned that a potential Israeli ground offensive in the Gaza Strip will further complicate the situation.

"The entry of Israeli troops into Gaza and a ground operation there will make the situation more complicated from a humanitarian and security point of view," Ashtiani said in a phone conversation with Iraqi Defense Minister Thabet al-Abbas on Friday.

He said the US government supports the brutal Israeli regime by sending shipments of weapons and supplying the requirements of the Tel Aviv regime from its bases in the region.

The Iranian defense chief pointed to the US veto of a UN Security Council resolution calling for a pause in Israel's attacks and crimes against the people of Gaza, emphasizing that the move would act as a "license" for the regime to kill more oppressed Palestinian people, especially in Gaza.

Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi said on Thursday the US veto of the UN Security Council resolution is "double oppression" against the Palestinians and humanity.

The US on Wednesday vetoed the resolution that had been drafted by Brazil and had sought to broker aid access to Gaza amid the incessant Israeli airstrikes and shelling against people in the tiny strip of land.

Representatives of 12 countries in the 15-member UNSC voted in favor of the resolution while Britain and Russia abstained. A UNSC resolution needs the approval of all five veto-wielding members of the body, including the US, to pass. Besides, for the resolution to pass, no permanent member should cast a veto. 

US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield justified her country’s veto, saying “this resolution did not mention Israel’s right of self-defense.”

The US has always been a staunch supporter of Israel. Washington has been supporting the regime by blocking international efforts to hold the regime accountable for its acts.

Ashtiani said the visits by the US president and other statesmen to the occupied territories prove they seek to cause more complication in the region "but they should know there is a threshold to Muslims' tolerance."

He said the continuation of Gaza's blockade and the non-issuance of permission to send humanitarian aid will lead to a "humanitarian catastrophe".

"It is necessary to know that regional nations will not tolerate the continuation of this regime's crimes," he warned.

He said Iran's Defense Ministry is ready to dispatch humanitarian aid, including food and medicine, to help people in Gaza.

The Iranian defense minister added that Israel has been committing crimes against the residents of Gaza for 75 years "with the support of Western countries and the United States." He once again threw Iran's weight behind the ongoing battle of the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas against Israel.

"The Islamic Republic of Iran believes Operation Al-Aqsa Storm and the actions of Hamas fighters have been carried out within the framework of legitimate defense and counteraction to the occupation of the Palestinian land," Ashtiani said.

More than 4,100 people have been killed and over 13,000 injured in more than 14 days of Israeli attacks on Gaza. The brutal campaign began after the Gaza-based Hamas resistance movement launched attacks on Israeli settlers and military forces on October 7 to retaliate months of violence against the Palestinians and their sanctities.

The US has always been a staunch supporter of Israel. Washington has been supporting the regime by blocking international efforts to hold the regime accountable for its acts.

For his part, the Iraqi defense minister said Baghdad has strongly condemned Israel's crimes against the Palestinian people and firmly opposes any normalization of ties with the regime.

He said the Iraqi prime minister is holding consultations with officials of Arab and Muslim countries to reinforce unity and help the oppressed people in Gaza. He also voiced Iraq's readiness to send humanitarian aid to Gaza.

Press TV’s website can also be accessed at the following alternate addresses:

Press TV News Roku