Iran condemns Israel for eliminating terrorist

Iran calls for "occupation" to be punished after Israel eliminates Islamic Jihad leader.

Elad Benari,

Baha Abu al-Ata (center), Islamic Jihad commander
Baha Abu al-Ata (center), Islamic Jihad commander

Iran on Tuesday condemned Israel for eliminating senior Islamic Jihad terrorist Baha Abu Al Ata, who had been responsible for recent attacks on Israel and had been planning further attacks.

Abbas Mousavi, spokesman for Iran’s Foreign Ministry, underlined in a statement quoted by Iran Front Page “the need to prosecute and punish the occupiers in international courts as war criminals.”

Mousavi praised the “legitimate struggles and heroic resistance of the Palestinian people”, and said “unity and resistance as the only option for the Palestinian people to fight the usurpers.”

“Unfortunately, in light of support for this ruthless and child-killing regime, the crimes against and assassinations of Palestinian people and fighters have continued inside and outside the occupied territories,” he added.

The Islamic Jihad earlier on Tuesday threatened to expand the range of rockets fired at Israel to include Jerusalem in retaliation for the elimination of Abu Al Ata.

"We are ready for a long and painful battle. We will hit the Zionist enemy until they beg for a ceasefire. The gates to hell have been opened," a senior Islamic Jihad source told Israel Hayom.

Iran is one of the major sponsors of the Islamic Jihad. In 2016, Iran pledged to provide $70 million in annual assistance to terror group's "jihad" against the State of Israel.

Islamic Jihad leader Ziad al-Nakhala earlier this year met with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who told him that “resistance and fighting the usurper Zionist regime” is the only way for Palestinians to gain their rights.

Nakhala also met with Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who predicted that Palestinian Arabs will eventually “establish a government in Tel Aviv” and added, “Palestine will remain powerful and the Palestinian nation’s final victory will take place in near future with the grace of God.”