The lone Jewish member of Iran’s parliament criticized Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu after he said that Iran today seeks the annihilation of the Jews, just as ancient Persia did in the Purim story.
“Netanyahu is an insane vampire drowned in crimes from head to toe, and the recent remarks made by the racist Israeli prime minister is not surprising to me,” Siamak Mareh Sedq, who represents the Jews of Iran in the government, said during an open session of parliament, JTA reported, citing Iran’s semiofficial Fars news agency.
Mareh Sedq also asserted that in contradiction to Netanyahu’s statements, anti-Semitism and racism have never been witnessed in the Iranian culture.
The comments come after Netanyahu 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.
Following those remarks, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif accused Netanyahu of “falsifying the Torah”.
Similarly, Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani also took exception to Netanyahu’s comments and suggested that the Prime Minister study history.
On Monday, Netanyahu fired back at Zarif and tweeted, “Iran's FM speaks of tolerance while the regime hangs gays, jails journalists and calls for Israel's annihilation. Who are they kidding?”
Iran's Jews number about 25,000, making it the largest Jewish community in any country in the Middle East outside of Israel.
While Iranian Jews say they “have an easy life,” and that “the government does not create problems for us”, experts believe that Iranian leaders are doing everything they can to display their country’s Jewish population as satisfied, even if they have to resort to fakery to do so.