Iran: Zionist entity root of Middle East conflict
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.
According to Press TV, Es'haq Al-e Habib, Iran's deputy ambassador to the UN, made the remarks as he was protesting a United States-sponsored 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 US foreign policy concerning the Palestinians, which is essentially based on deceit, complete ignorance of Palestinians' rights, and also unconditioned and invariable support for the illegal Zionist enitty."
"The draft resolution is predicated on deception since it totally ignores the root of the conflict, namely the illegal occupation of Palestine by Zionists over the past decades."
Al-e Habib said it never mattered in the same pro-Israel US 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.
Al-e Habib said the illegal Zionist 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 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.