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Israel a 'cancerous tumor,' Iran says

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei speaks to his supporters during a rally marking the 21st anniversary of the death revolutionary leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in Tehran on June 4, 2010. UPI/HO
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei speaks to his supporters during a rally marking the 21st anniversary of the death revolutionary leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in Tehran on June 4, 2010. UPI/HO | License Photo

TEHRAN, June 4 (UPI) -- The supreme leader of Iran described Israel as a "cancerous tumor" during Friday prayer celebrations honoring the late Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

Iran commemorated the anniversary of the 1989 death of Khomeini during Friday prayers in Tehran. Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei during his sermon reflected on the late cleric's strong stance against Israel, the semiofficial Fars News Agency reports.

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"Israel is a cancerous tumor," the supreme leader said.

Khamenei lashed out at Israel for its policy regarding the blockade on Gaza. The Israeli military stormed a Turkish-flagged vessel Monday thought to be delivering humanitarian supplies to Gaza, killing several activists during the raid.

"The attack on the Gaza aid convoy showed how barbaric the Zionist regime really is," the ruling cleric said.

Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah in a speech late Thursday said his supporters should look to the late Khomeini's teachings in light of the Israeli incident.

"(Khomeini) revived the culture of jihad and rise in the face of tyrants to reject the humiliation of man," Hezbollah's al-Manar quoted Nasrallah as saying.

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Iran organized demonstrations following Friday prayers to protest the Israeli attack on the Gaza flotilla.

State-funded broadcaster Press TV reported "millions of protesters" attended the sanctioned demonstrations.

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