The supreme leader of Iran, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, urged the Palestinians to “continue the resistance” on the ground and “breakaway from the consequences of the Oslo Accords.” He also encouraged Palestinians to manage what he described as “internal differences,” before they turn into domestic conflict and confrontation, in a statement that echoed a threat.
Khamenei’s assertion came during a conference organized by Tehran under the slogan ‘Supporting the Palestinian Intifada,’ which was attended by the representatives of a number of Palestinian groups, and in the absence of a delegate of the Palestinian Authority, the legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.
In contrast, the newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat quoted an official source in the Palestinian Authority who warned against the use of Palestinians as “a fuel for other wars”, in response to the calling of the Secretary General of the ‘Islamic Jihad Movement’ in the Tehran conference on Tuesday to “unite fronts against Israel in Gaza and Lebanon.”
It seems that Iran is trying to re-use the Palestinian card to book a place in the area and draw away from the eyes of the world, especially in terms of its interventions in many countries in the region and its direct role in destabilizing these countries, specifically Syria, Iraq and Yemen.
Observers are wondering about the motives and the role of Iran in the region. The reactions in the press today about the words of the Khamenei during the ‘Supporting the Palestinian Intifada’ conference carried many questions, especially about the timing, because every once in a while Iran tries to escape the regional pressure by advocating the Palestinian cause.
Among the most prominent points referred to by Khamenei, is when he noted that “any group that leaves the banner of resistance, will certainly pave the way for another group from the Palestinian people to carry the flag.”
Khamenei also stressed that “any group that maintains its presence in the path of resistance is an ally to Iran, and anybody that distances itself from the struggle is consequently moving away from Iran.”
In reference to what was described as Iran’s exploitation of the Palestinian cause, Khamenei sharply argued that the numerous crises in the region are behind the decline of support for the Palestinian cause and the liberation of Jerusalem.
It is important to mention that in recent years, Iran’s relations with the Palestinian resistance groups have suffered, because of Iran’s role in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and in many other places in the region.