The Islamic Jihad terror group said on Thursday that it is proud of the fact that Iran supports it.
The group was behind the multiple rocket and missile attacks on Israel this past week.
“We are proud and honored to say that the Islamic Republic of Iran gives us support and help,” Abu Ahmed, a spokesman for the Islamic Jihad, told the Reuters news agency.
While he denied reports that Iran provided his group with arms and would not comment on rumors that his terrorists were trained by Iran, Abu Ahmed said, “What I will say is that we have every right to turn to every source of power for help.”
The latest round of rocket attacks, which resulted in the death of one Israeli, came to an end earlier this week with Egyptian mediation. Abu Ahmed said, however, that the ceasefire is unlikely to last long.
“Theoretically the calm has been restored, but in practice it hasn't really,” he told Reuters, adding that Israel is “itching” for a fight in Gaza.
Abu Ahmed also denied that his group had been behind the Grad missile attack on Ashdod last Wednesday which offset the latest round of violence. He claimed that Israel had used the rocket attack to find and strike the Islamic Jihad’s five top fighters. The five had been together in the open, he claimed, because they had not expected to be targeted.
Addressing the video posted by the terror group which showed terrorists firing rockets at Israel using a portable rocket launcher installed on the back of a pickup truck, Abu Ahmed said, “The Jerusalem Brigades really surprised Israel, forcing them to rethink their assessment of us ... I don’t think they realized we had that weaponry.”
The video was later proven to be fake.
He said that Hamas, the terror group which governs Gaza, was not involved in the latest round of fighting and said that his group had done all the talking with Egypt. However, he played down reports of tensions between the Islamic Jihad and Hamas over the latter’s reluctance to go head-to-head with Israel.
“Certainly in terms of ideology, there is no difference between Hamas and the Islamic Jihad,” Abu Ahmed said. “The difference is in the methodology.”
He added that Hamas’ governmental role meant that it was “more vulnerable to outside pressure.”
Finally, he said that Islamic Jihad’s biggest problem is the IAF drones that regularly buzz over Gaza, but noted that his group’s terrorists were “not afraid of sudden death.”
“It is a good feeling to be under drone attack,” Abu Ahmed said. “When we chose the path of resistance, we opted either for martyrdom or victory. Martyrdom is the more desirable.”