Sunday 15 October 2023

WWIII Watch: Iran Threatens Intervention if Israel Invades Gaza; Warns of “Huge Earthquake” Attack by Hezbollah

 Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian publicly warned Israel of an attack by Lebanon based Hezbollah that would cause a “huge earthquake” in response to Israel’s attacks on Hamas controlled Gaza after Hamas slaughtered over 1,300 Israelis and kidnapped 150 last Saturday in a surprise attack. Amir-Abdollahian also privately warned Israel via the UN that Iran would intervene if Israel invades Gaza, according to Axios.

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, file screen image.

Amir-Abdollahian made his threats while on a diplomatic visit in Beirut, Lebanon on Saturday where he met with Hamas and Palestinian leaders and (separately) UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Tor Wennesland.

Excerpt from the Axios report:

Iran sent a message to Israel on Saturday stressing that it does not want further escalation in the Hamas-Israel war, but that it will have to intervene if the Israeli operation in Gaza continues, two diplomatic sources with knowledge of the situation told Axios.

…Wennesland urged Amir-Abdollahian to help prevent a spillover of the conflict in Gaza and Israel to the wider region in the Middle East.

The Iranian foreign minister replied that Iran doesn’t want the conflict to turn into a regional war and wants to try and help with the release of civilians who are being held hostage by Hamas in Gaza.

But Amir-Abdollahian stressed that Iran has its redlines. He said that if the Israeli military operation continues — and especially if Israel follows through on its promise of a ground offensive in Gaza — Iran will have to respond, according to the sources.

Wennesland called Israeli national security adviser Tzachi Hanegbi and other officials and conveyed Iran’s message, the sources said.


The AP (and other media) reported on Amir-Abdollahian’s “huge earthquake” warning (AP excerpt):

Amirabdollahian discussed in Beirut on Saturday the situation in Gaza and the region with the top Hamas official in exile, Saleh Arouri, and the leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group, Ziad Nakhaleh, according to Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV.

Hamas officials have repeatedly said that last Saturday’s attack on southern Israel that killed over 1,300 civilians and troops was the work of the Palestinian group and Iran had nothing to do with it. Hamas officials did not respond to calls by The Associated Press to confirm and give details about the meeting.

Amirabdollahian left Beirut on Saturday afternoon following a tour that took him to Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, where Tehran enjoys wide influence.

Amirabdollahian said he met Friday with Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, who briefed him on the group’s conditions in Lebanon.

“I know about the scenarios that Hezbollah has put in place,” Amirabdollahian said. “Any step the resistance (Hezbollah) will take will cause a huge earthquake in the Zionist entity.”

There have been sporadic missile launched from Lebanon and Syria followed by response volleys by Israel since the Hamas attack, but nothing that would provoke a large scale response.

Israel called on civilians in northern Gaza to evacuate to the south as an invasion to root out Hamas is being prepared. The Biden administration has cautioned Israel to follow the laws of war and urged Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu to delay the invasion to give more time for evacuations.

Israel posted a new video Saturday afternoon explaining it is at war with Hamas, not Gaza civilians.

UPDATE: Iranian news agency posted video late Saturday night local time of Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian in Doha, Qatar warmly meeting Hamas Political Bureau Chief Ismail Haniyeh.

Post a Comment

Start typing and press Enter to search