Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman on Tuesday refused to confirm or deny whether
Iran had supplied Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad with artillery
Asked whether Iran had supplied its Fajr-5 rockets to Hamas,
Rahmin Mehmanparast replied that it was “the duty of all nations, especially
Islamic countries to take action to defend the oppressed people of Palestine, at
a time when the Zionist regime is committing a crime,” according to reports in
Iran’s state media.
Asked where Hamas’s Fajr-5 missiles were produced,
Mehmanparast said: “The question of which country produces missiles should be
asked of the military authorities [of that country],” according to Iran’s ISNA
“The Palestinian people must be aware of their rights and
the duty of countries to support them,” Mehmanparast added.
how the rockets had reached Gaza, Mehmanparast said that question should be
asked to Israeli intelligence officials.
Iran had previously appeared to
try to distance itself from comments by Hassan Nasrallah, the secretary general
of Iran’s Lebanese proxy, Hezbollah, who praised Hamas in a speech at the
weekend for using Iranian- made Fajr-5 rockets.
In response to
Nasrallah’s remarks, senior Iranian lawmaker Alaeddin Boroujerdi denied Iran was
sending missiles to Hamas.
However, on Monday the leader of Palestinian
Islamic Jihad said that Iran has supplied Gaza “resistance” groups with weapons
Ziyad Nakhleh told Iran’s state-owned Al-Alam Arabic news
channel on Monday that the terror group had Fajr-3 and Fajr-5
“These missiles have restored the Palestinian people their
dignity,” Al-Alam quoted Nakhleh as saying.
According to Al-Alam, Nakhleh
stressed that the missiles had come from “our allies and our brothers in the
Islamic Republic of Iran.”
“This wonderful weapon in the battle proved
itself to have a major role in tipping the balance of power and proving to the
Israelis that we can bomb their cities just like they are bombing our cities,
and bomb their camps just like they are bombing our children,” Nakhleh said
according to the Iranian report.