Iran blames Israeli occupation as the root cause of Middle East conflicts

December 7, 2018

Iran's permanent mission to the United Nations has described the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories as the root cause of all existing conflicts and crises across the Middle East region.

Es’haq Al-e Habib, Iran's deputy ambassador to the UN, made the remarks as he was protesting a U.S.-sponsored draft resolution seeking to condemn the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas, according to Press TV.

The proposed resolution, he said in a statement addressed to the UN on Thursday, "indicates the real nature of the U.S. foreign policy concerning the Palestinians, which is essentially based on deceit, complete ignorance of Palestinians' rights, and also unconditioned and invariable support for Israel."

"The draft resolution is predicated on deception since it totally ignores the root of the conflict, namely the illegal occupation of Palestine by Israel over the past decades." 

Al-e Habib said it never mattered in the same pro-Israel U.S. foreign policy what crimes would be perpetrated against the Palestinians, how many Palestinian children would be killed, or what brutality and inhumane treatment would they be subjected to. 

Al-e Habib said Israel's settlement activities showed that "it has never had any intention for or interest in peace with the Palestinians".  

He also criticized the regime's "unprecedented" measures aimed at speeding up Judaization of Jerusalem al-Quds. Efforts, that he said, included changing the holy occupied city's demographic structure as well as its religious and cultural identity by destroying Muslim and Christian religious symbols there.

The official further stressed that the Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands had led to constant violation of the rights of the Palestinians and Arabs living in other occupied territories, and the displacement of around six million Palestinians. 

 ‘Ethnic cleansing’

"It is for this very reason that the Palestinians, whether Muslim or Christian, are suffering from a situation, which is tantamount to ethnic cleansing," Al-e Habib said.

Elsewhere in his remarks, the official pointed out that the Israeli siege of the Gaza Strip has turned the Palestinian coastal territory into a "stifling and uninhabitable prison". The blockade amounted to "collective punishment" of the enclave's entire territory, he added.

He reminded that more than 160 Palestinians have been killed since March as they have been protesting the stealing of their lands.

Al-e Habib said Hamas was part of the Palestinian people and that it was only defending the Palestinians against Israeli military aggression, something that he said constituted "a legal and intrinsic right under the international law". 

"We recognize Hamas as a legal resistance movement, which fights for the liberation of Palestinian lands from foreign occupation."

The 193-member UN General Assembly voted 87-57 in favor of the resolution Thursday while 33 members chose to abstain, leaving Washington with a plurality vote that fell short of the two-thirds requirement to adopt the resolution.

SP/PA

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