Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has urged Muslim nations to halt their oil and food exports to Israel, demanding an immediate cessation of its attacks on the Gaza Strip, as conveyed by state media outlets.
Addressing students in Tehran, Khamenei asserted, “The bombings on Gaza must stop immediately … the path of oil and food exports to the Zionist regime should be stopped,” as quoted by Iranian state media.
Following an Oct. 7 attack that resulted in the death of 1,400 individuals and the capture of hundreds, Israel declared its intention to eradicate Hamas, the ruling body in Gaza, which receives backing from Tehran. The declaration has been followed by an intense Israeli offensive on Gaza and the imposition of a blockade. According to Palestinian authorities, the death toll exceeds 8,000.
Warnings and Indications from Iran
Iran’s religious leadership has signalled to Israel about a potential escalation if the latter doesn’t cease its aggressive actions against Palestinians. Indications suggest that Tehran-supported proxies in the Middle East stand prepared for mobilization.
The Palestinian cause has consistently been at the heart of Iran’s political ideology ever since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. It’s through this support that Iran’s Shia theocracy projects itself as a leading figure in the Muslim community.
Highlighting the involvement of Western powers, Khamenei, the highest authority in Iran, pointed out the United States’ implicit role in what he termed Israel’s “recent crimes against Palestinians”. During his address, Khamenei remarked, “The Islamic world should not forget that in the crucial issue of Gaza, those standing against the oppressed Palestinian nation were the United States, France, and Britain.”
Israel, which Tehran does not recognize, has repeatedly claimed that Iran’s clerical leaders are instigating violence by arming Hamas. On the contrary, Tehran maintains its support to the group is moral and financial, emphasizing Hamas’s governance over the Gaza Strip.
Condemning Western allegations, Khamenei stated, “One of the shameless acts of the West is accusing Palestinian fighters of terrorism.”