Iran warns Palestinian on peace talks
Photo shows Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei foreground, leads his sermon of Eid al-Fitr prayer, marking the start in Iran of the Eid al-Fitr holiday in Tehran, Aug. 9. AP PhotoIran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamanei warned the Palestinians on Aug. 9 against renewed peace talks with Israel, saying they would be “detrimental” to their cause.
The U.S.-mediated talks will force “the Palestinians to relinquish their rights,” Khamanei told worshippers in Tehran University after Eid al-Fitr prayers marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan.
His remarks came a day after the U.S. State Department said Palestinian and Israeli negotiators would resume talks on ending their long-standing conflict on Aug. 14 in Jerusalem. Both sides have already agreed to try to resolve their differences within nine months.
“Negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians will be resuming Aug. 14 in Jerusalem and will be followed by a meeting in Jericho (in the West Bank),” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told a briefing. Psaki said U.S. envoys Martin Indyk and Frank Lowenstein will travel to the region to help facilitate the negotiations. She signaled that no major breakthroughs were likely at the meeting, saying: “Secretary Kerry does not expect to make any announcements in the aftermath of this round of talks.”
The talks will also “encourage the aggressors to increase their aggression and suppress the rightful resistance of the Palestinians,” said Khamanei, who has the final say on Iran’s foreign policy.
Dismissing the talks as “the doing of the arrogance,” an allusion to Iran’s arch-foe the United States, he said the result would “definitely be detrimental” to the Palestinians.
Iran, a major regional supporter of the Islamist Hamas movement that rules the Gaza Strip, does not see eye to eye with the Palestinian Authority. The Islamic republic has repeatedly voiced opposition about talks focusing on a two-state solution, saying Israel would never agree to withdraw from “occupied lands.”
Khamanei also called on the Muslim world to condemn Israel’s “oppressive” actions against Palestinians. “The Muslim world must not back down from its support for Palestine, and it should condemn the oppressive action of fierce Zionist wolves and their international supporters,” he said.