IRANIAN SUPREME Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei delivers a speech during a ceremony marking the death anniversary of Islamic Republic founder Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, in Tehran on June 4, 2017.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Supreme Leader of Iran Ayatollah Ali Khamenei attacked Israel and its Arab allies in a speech delivered in the run up to Friday’s annual anti-Israel Quds Day marches in Iran and around the world, the semi-official Iranian Students’ News Agency reported Thursday.
“Support for Palestine and the resistance forces facing the Zionist Regime, and defending the independence and territorial integrity of the countries of the region, is a source of pride for the Islamic Republic,” Khamenei said at an event on Monday. “But our enemies try to castigate it as ‘Iran’s interference in the region.’” Iranian troops, advisers and Iran-affiliated Shi’ite militias have been instrumental in preserving Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime in the midst of the country’s ongoing civil war.
Khamenei also threatened rival Arab states that have recently thawed relations with Israel in the face of the perceived Iranian nuclear and missile threat.
“Some Arab governments have become the enemies of their own peoples,” Khomeini said.
“In such a situation, passionate and devout Arab youth have the responsibility for destroying these ‘empty entities.’” Khamenei also underlined the importance of Friday’s Quds Day, saying, “Participation in the parade and defending the resistance of the oppressed and struggling Palestinian people, is truly an important step on the path towards building a better future.”
According to the published Quds Day schedule, the day will be marked with ten marches through the streets of the capital Tehran and other events. The official slogans for the marches are “Victory for the resistance front, defeat for the American-Zionist front” and “The Palestinian people are determined to return.”
According to Iranian media, groups from across the Iranian political spectrum have pledged their participation in the Quds Day, including President Hassan Rouhani, who has locked horns with the Supreme Leader over the country’s engagement with the West, loosening social restrictions, and other issues.
“All Iranians, of whatever political stripe or belief, should participate widely in the great Quds Day march,” said Rouhani.