Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday evening fired back at Iran’s Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, who a day earlier accused Netanyahu of “falsifying the Torah”.
“Iran's FM speaks of tolerance while the regime hangs gays, jails journalists and calls for Israel's annihilation. Who are they kidding?” Netanyahu tweeted.
Zarif on Sunday took to social media to attack Netanyahu after the Prime Minister said before a reading of the Book of Esther for the Purim holiday that the Islamic Republic, as ancient Persia, is trying to destroy the Jewish people.
Netanyahu said the same during an exchange of Purim greetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow last week.
"Once again, Benjamin Netanyahu not only distorts the realities of today, but also distorts the past -- including Jewish scripture,” said Zarif.
“It is truly regrettable that bigotry gets to the point of making allegations against an entire nation which has saved Jews three times in its history. The Book of Esther tells of how Xerxes I saved Jews from a plot hatched by Haman the Agagite, which is marked on this very day; again, during the time of Cyrus the Great, an Iranian king saved the Jews -- this time from captivity in Babylon; and during the Second World War, when Jews were being slaughtered in Europe, Iran gladly took them in," he added.
Similarly, Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani also took exception to Netanyahu’s comments and suggested that the Prime Minister study history.
Netanyahu “neither is familiar with the history nor has studied the Torah," claimed Larijani, who claimed Netanyahu "distorted the Iranians' pre-Islam historical era and attempted to misrepresent events.”
He also added, “Of course, nothing more than presenting such lies is expected from a wicked Zionist."