In the wake of the ongoing conflict in the Gaza Strip, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has called for Muslim countries to cease economic cooperation with Israel. Khamenei expressed concern over the situation in Gaza, which has seen intense Israeli airstrikes since Hamas militants crossed the border on October 7, resulting in more than 1,400 casualties.
Khamenei’s statement specifically urged Muslim nations to impose a “block on oil and food exports” to Israel, underlining his country’s longstanding opposition to the Israeli government.
The Supreme Leader also criticized Western governments, singling out Britain, France, and the United States for their perceived stance against Palestine. He emphasized that it is essential for the Muslim world to recognize the external pressures on the population of Gaza, attributing the crisis not solely to the Israeli government but also to these Western nations.
Iran’s Defense Minister, Mohammad Reza Ashtiani, issued a warning to “certain European countries which help” Israel, advising them to be cautious and avoid angering the Muslim world. Iran has been a significant supporter of Hamas, both financially and militarily, and has praised the militant group’s attacks on Israel, though it denies any direct involvement.
Iran’s new President, Ebrahim Raisi, asserted his country’s duty to support resistance groups but underscored that these groups operate independently. The United States, in response, accused Iran of actively facilitating attacks on U.S. forces in the Middle East.
On Friday, the U.S. government announced a fresh round of sanctions targeting Hamas’s funding networks and sources of support in Iran, intensifying the international response to the ongoing conflict in the region.