Irani leader slams Mid East peace talks

Sept. 10, 2010 at 4:21 PM
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TEHRAN, Sept. 10 (UPI) -- An Iranian spiritual leader says peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority make for a coverup for Israeli crimes against Palestinians.

"The United States and the West just sit back and watch the suppression of the Palestinian nation and yet they arrange talks for peace, what peace?" Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei said. "Between which people?"

Khamenei praised the Palestinian resistance against Tel Aviv, saying that "pressure cannot crush these people's resistance," Iran's Press TV said.

Last week, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad derided the peace talks and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, The Jerusalem Post reported.

"Who does Abbas represent?" Ahmadinejad asked. "Who gave him the mandate to negotiate on behalf of the Palestinians? What will they talk about -- Palestine? Who has the right to surrender parts of Palestine to the enemy?"

Iran's criticism of the peace talks and Abbas coincides with the Islamic Republic's close ties with Hamas, which has also denied the legitimacy of the current round of peace negotiations, the Post said.

Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said Friday that no one will be obligated to adhere to a potential peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

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