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IRAN JEWS STAGE PRO-PALESTINE

TEHRAN - Members of Iran's Jewish community staged a demonstration outside of the United Nations' office in Tehran, to protest the Israel Defense Forces' operation in the Gaza Strip.
  • The official Iranian news agency, IRNA, reported that community members, alongside Jewish parliamentarian Siamak Mara-Sedq, urged Israel to do its part to return quiet and security to the region.
  • The chairman of Iran's Jewish Union, Rahmatullah Raafi, said the community had come out in support of the Palestinian people.
  • "We are here to express out support and sympathy for the Palestinian nation," he said, adding that Muslim nations could rise up as a single large force against Israel. He also said that the victors of the current conflict were the residents of Gaza.
  • Both sides "need to unite against the occupation," Odeh said. "Our enemy is the Israeli occupation, not Hamas, and not Fatah, and not others."
  • Operation Cast Lead was an unprecedented tragedy, exceeding Deir Yassin in 1948, he said.
  • Some 25,000 Jews still live in Iran. Many have visited Israel, where a large percentage of the community has immigrated in the past 30 years. Still, others prefer to remain in Iran. There are rarely reports of the community suffering from antagonism or aggression from their neighbors or from the government.
In Tel aviv, the Hadash Party plans a massive Jewish-Arab demonstration for Tel Aviv on Saturday evening to protest the IAF offensive in Gaza, while the Arab Higher Monitoring Committee has a smaller protest set for the same day in Sakhnin.
  • The protests will call on Israel to "stop the massacre in Gaza," and on feuding Palestinian factions - particularly Fatah and Hamas - to unite, said Aymen Odeh, secretary general of the Hadash communist party and a member of the monitoring committee.
AP
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