The Iranian president says the creation of an internationally recognised Palestinian state would be the first step towards wiping out Israel. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was addressing worshippers at Friday prayers in Tehran.
“The Zionist regime is the axis of unity of all the world’s thieves and criminals. Do not suppose that by recognition of a Palestinian state your existence will be stabilised.”
Ahmadinejad delivered his speech on al Quds, or Jerusalem Day, an annual show of support for the Palestinian cause that is held on the last Friday of Ramadan.
His comments come weeks ahead of a UN General Assembly meeting in New York at which the Arab League plans to apply for full UN membership of a Palestinian state encompassing the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.
But the Iranian president is urging Palestinians not to settle for the two-state solution, which is backed by Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas.