Is­rael Oc­cu­pa­tion Root Of Mid­dle East Con­flict

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TEHRAN (PressTV) - Iran’s per­ma­nent mis­sion to the United Nations has de­scribed the Is­raeli oc­cu­pa­tion of Pales­tinian ter­ri­to­ries as the root of all ex­ist­ing con­flicts and crises in the Mid­dle East re­gion.

Es’haq Al-e Habib, Iran’s deputy am­bas­sador to the UN, made the re­marks as he was protest­ing a United Statesspon­sored draft res­o­lu­tion seek­ing to con­demn the Pales­tinian re­sis­tance move­ment Ha­mas. 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 the Pales­tini­ans.

A U.S. draft res­o­lu­tion to con­demn the Ha­mas re­sis­tance move­ment at the UN failed to gain a ma­jor­ity vote. 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 Tel Aviv-oc­cu­pied ter­ri­to­ries, and the dis­place­ment of around six mil­lion Pales­tini­ans.

“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 Is­rael’s siege of the Gaza Strip had 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.More than 160 Pales­tini­ans have died dur­ing Is­rael’s sup­pres­sion of anti-oc­cu­pa­tion Pales­tinian protests in Gaza since March, he re­minded.

Al-e Habib added that 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 Pales­tini­ans 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.

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