Iran's Tasnim News Agency on Monday officially launched a Hebrew-language news site and social media accounts, made in honor of the two-year anniversary of the assassination of Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Quds Force head Qasem Soleimani.
“Although the number of people speaking Hebrew in the world is not so large, the Tasnim News Agency decided to set up a website in Hebrew language considering the strategic importance that the issue of Palestine has for the Islamic Republic of Iran and for Muslims across the world, and to release reports relating to the issue in that site,” Tasnim CEO Majid Qolizadeh said in a statement, further alluding to the existence of a "massive and systematic censorship" of news about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
“The undeniable reality is that not only have the people of the world been deprived of receiving the news about the whole truth about occupied Palestine and the Zionist crimes but the reports that are fed even to the residents of the occupied territories are being extensively manipulated and managed,” Qolizadeh said.
The site, which can be seen here, also launched official social media accounts on both Twitter and Instagram, where the handle in both is @Tasnimnews_he.
“Basically, everybody speaking Hebrew in the world can be among the audience for the Hebrew website of Tasnim News Agency. The new team of Tasnim News Agency is trying to provide the Hebrew-speaking people outside the occupied territories with true and authentic news of what is happening inside the occupied territories and other parts of the world, particularly in the West Asia region," Qolizadeh said.
"Tasnim tries to help the residents of the occupied territories know more about the true nature and behavior of their leaders, get informed about the shaky and dark future of usurpation and occupation of the land of a nation and about the crimes against them, and receive more accurate and genuine arguments and capabilities of the Zionist regime’s enemies,” he added.
“The leaders of the Zionist regime are probably aware, so much more than what they pretend, of the doomed fate of their tyrannies and are mindful of the realities about and the capabilities of their adversaries, including Iran. Still, they can be in the group of audience for the Hebrew website of Tasnim News Agency to further realize the truth and what goes on in reality.”
The agency, which has strong links with the IRGC, further referenced the timing of the site's launch with the anniversary of Soleimani's death.
“The glorious martyr, Haj Qassem Soleimani, devoted his life to the efforts for the stability and calm of the nations and to the fight against cruelty and crimes in the West Asia region,” Qolizadeh said.
“There is hardly any move comparable with the sanctity and impact of the measures by Haj Qassem. However, Tasnim is doing its best to follow the holy path of Haj Qassem in the region, which is seeking freedom and advocating justice for all people with various ethnicities, religions, interests, and nationalities.”
Soleimani was killed in a US drone strike ordered by then-US president Donald Trump on January 3, 2020. Tehran has accused Israel of having been involved, and on Monday asked the United Nations Security Council to hold the US and Israel accountable for the assassination. Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi further vowed revenge for the assassination if Trump and former US secretary of state Mike Pompeo were not put on trial for it.
The new site also comes following the websites of The Jerusalem Post and Maariv being attacked by pro-Iranian hackers earlier Monday morning.
During this hack, the homepage was replaced with a photo of a model Dimona nuclear facility being blown up and the text "We are close to you where you do not think about it" in English and Hebrew along with imagery relating to the anniversary of Soleimani's assassination.
The identity of the hackers has yet to be confirmed. However, according to former IDF cyber chief Brig.-Gen. (ret.) Yaron Rosen, the hack was part of an influence operation timed to impact the ongoing nuclear talks in Vienna.
Tzvi Joffre and Yonah Jeremy Bob contributed to this report.