Iran’s President Rouhani says Israel is supporting ISIS and ‘takes care of their injured fighters and makes weapons available to them’
- Hassan Rouhani accused Israel of ‘terrorism’ and insisted that Iran ‘brings peace’
- He claimed that injured ISIS fighters had been treated in Israeli hospitals
- Rouhani is in New York for this week’s UN General Assembly gathering of leaders
Iranian leader Hassan Rouhani has claimed that Israel is supporting ISIS and ‘takes care of their injured fighters’.
Rouhani, who is in New York for this week’s UN General Assembly meeting, claimed that ‘there is no terrorism throughout the world that matches the activities of Israel’ and insisted that ‘Iran is a country that has brought peace in the region’.
Speaking to Fox News in an interview which aired last night, he claimed that Israel had treated ISIS jihadists in hospitals and supplied the terror group with Israeli weapons.
He also took aim at Washington for financing the Saudi-led coalition in the war in Yemen which has killed tens of thousands of people.
Iranian leader Hassan Rouhani speaks to Chris Wallace of Fox News in an interview which aired last night, in which Rouhani accused Israel of supporting ISIS
‘Israel is the country that takes care of the injured ISIS fighters and they make weapons available to them,’ Rouhani said.
Challenged on that claim, he went on: ‘Certainly, undoubtedly, do you have any doubts? Would you like to see the proof?
‘You should visit Israeli hospitals and see the injured ISIS war fighters, how they’re being taken care of.
‘You should see the weapons captured from ISIS fighters and see that they are Israeli-made.
‘The challenge is that sometimes American media outlets fail to reveal the truth to the American public and they only receive the news from one specific viewpoint or channel if you will.
‘So that is why the people of America are quite frankly not very well aware of the realities in our region.
Rouhani, pictured right meeting European leaders Boris Johnson and Emmanuel Macron yesterday, is expected to speak at the UN General Assembly today
‘If the American people knew that so many Yemenis on a daily basis are being innocently killed with their money and their weapons systems, they would not stay silent.’
Pressed on his country’s links to Hamas and Hezbollah, Rouhani said: ‘You label people who fight for the country and their lands as terrorism.
‘Those who are the subjects of occupation, what should they do? Be passive and just look?’
‘You defend an Israel, the foundation of which is based upon attacking and usurping on the rights of others.
‘On a daily basis [Israel] has targeted the people of Palestine, Lebanon and most recently even Iraq as well as Syria.
‘There is no terrorism throughout the world that matches the activities of Israel.’
Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu (pictured) has taken a hard line against Iran, although he is now facing a battle to stay in power at home
Tensions between Iran and Israel have ratcheted up in recent weeks, with Israel carrying out increasingly public airstrikes against Iran-backed forces in Syria.
Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu has taken a hard line in the run-up to his country’s recent election and Israeli forces have been on high alert.
Israel views Iran as its greatest threat, and last year hailed Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal and re-impose sanctions.
However, Netanyahu is facing a battle for his own political survival at home after the election ended in stalemate last week.
Rouhani also denied American claims that Iran was behind a drone attack on Saudi oil facilities earlier this month which sent tensions spiralling again.
The Iranian leader is expected to speak at the UN today amid fading hopes of a breakthrough in Tehran’s nuclear standoff with Washington.
Iran has scaled back its commitments under the 2015 pact since Trump re-imposed sanctions last year.
Rouhani has said he would consider meeting with Trump if sanctions were lifted, but Trump announced an increase in sanctions on Iran last week.