Middle East

Iran warns of 'Israeli war expansion' if war crimes against Palestinians continue

Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian speaks by phone with EU's foreign policy chief Josep Borrell about Israel's recent attacks on the Gaza Strip

Ikrame Imane Kouachi  | 03.12.2023 - Update : 04.12.2023
Iran warns of 'Israeli war expansion' if war crimes against Palestinians continue


Iran has warned of "Israeli war expansion" in the region if its forces continue to commit war crimes against Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip and the occupied West Bank.

Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian spoke by phone with European Union's foreign policy chief Josep Borrell about the latest developments on Israel's attacks on the Gaza Strip, the Iranian Foreign Ministry said late Saturday.

“If the war crimes committed by the Israeli regime in Gaza and the West Bank are not stopped, the scope of the war in the region is likely to deepen and expand,” Abdollahian warned.

Abdollahian stressed the need to "stop the military attacks launched by the Zionist regime against the residents of Gaza as soon as possible," the statement said, urging “the importance of providing the necessary ways to send humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip.”

He emphasized that his country rejects "Israel's plans and practices to forcibly remove Palestinians from their lands," calling the Israeli "occupation and aggression" a biased approach that exacerbates the problem.

Borrell, for his part, also stressed the importance of reducing tensions in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank as soon as possible.

He said the European Union is trying to ensure Israel's compliance with international laws of war.

"We believe that the solution to the Palestinian issue lies in focusing on the diplomatic track," Borrell is quoted as saying in an Iranian Foreign Ministry statement.

He also agreed with the top Iranian diplomat that "the continuation of military attacks will lead to an escalation of the crisis."

During their conversations, the two leaders also exchanged views on the cooperation between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Early Friday, the Israeli army resumed its onslaught on the Gaza Strip as the belligerent parties failed to renew the humanitarian pause which lasted for seven days.

At least 193 Palestinians have been killed and 652 injured since Friday in Israeli airstrikes, according to the Gaza Health Ministry.

More than 15,200 Palestinians, mostly children and women, have been killed in Israeli attacks since Oct. 7 following a cross-border attack by the Palestinian resistance group, Hamas.

The official Israeli death toll stands at 1,200.

* Writing by Ikram Kouachi

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