News / Middle East

Tehran Leader's Comment About Israel Raises Stir

Iran's President-elect Hassan Rouhani, after speaking at a press conference, in Tehran, June 17, 2013.
Iran's President-elect Hassan Rouhani, after speaking at a press conference, in Tehran, June 17, 2013.
VOA News
On the eve of taking office, Iran's President-elect Hassan Rouhani on Friday was at the center of controversy over remarks he reportedly made about Israel.
 
The Iranian Student News Agency (ISNA) first reported that Rouhani called Israel a "wound" that "has sat on the body of the Muslim world" and needs to be "removed." International news agencies carried the remarks and Israel's prime minister issued a swift retort.
 
However, Iranian state television said later that accounts of Rouhani's comments were distorted. It aired video of reporters interviewing Rouhani in which he said "occupying Palestinian territories is like an old wound in the body of Islamic society."
 
The video, viewed by VOA's Persian News Network, could not be independently verified.
 
Rouhani's remarks came as Iranians held rallies celebrating Friday as Quds Day (Jerusalem Day). He is due to take office on Sunday.
 
Iranian news reports say the president-elect also cast doubt on Israel's efforts to revive peace talks with Palestinians.
 
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu quickly criticized Rouhani's reported comments, saying the Iranian leader had shown his "true face" sooner than expected. He said Rouhani's comments were part of Iran's "plan of action" against Israel.
 
Iran has been steadfast in its rejection of Israel as a state. Israel and Western powers have accused Iran of having nuclear weapons ambitions, a charge Tehran denies. Israel has warned it will not tolerate Iran's development of a nuclear arsenal, which Israel sees as an emerging threat.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.
(This story is an updated version of an earlier report.)

You May Like

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land In French Port

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching 'Fortress Europe' More

Video Westgate Mall Attack Survivors Confront Painful Memories

On anniversary of terror attack, survivors discuss how they have coped with trauma they experienced that day More

New Hints That Dark Matter Exists

New evidence from International Space Station hints at existence of dark matter and dark energy More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: veteran from: herat
August 03, 2013 3:38 PM
This just shows how this state is dangerous for humanidade.Não we understand how the world is not yet firmly reacts to this dangerous race to nuclear terrorism so that this country wants to achieve or alcançou.Será that are already there waiting for the will shoot first? (who has not sinned to be the first to throw a stone).


by: Mike
August 03, 2013 12:21 AM
So he never said "Israel is an old would" or that it should be "removed".

All he said was that the "occupation of Palestinian lands" is an old wound.

It looks like it doesn't matter what Iranian leaders say. The liars like Bibi Netanyahu will simply misrepresent their statements, and millions of people will believe them.

In Response

by: Les from: Worldwide
August 04, 2013 2:07 PM
Mike - Everything matters , especially in proper translation . Educated or those who follow the truth knows very well , that Iran is NOT a perpetrator and overlook the reason of this uneven conflict .
All that mess and outrages pointing the guilt on innocents has only one desire : MORE LAND and VIOLENCE , with vision of unnecessary war benefiting ever hungry for somebodies wealth .


by: Godwin from: Nigeria
August 02, 2013 12:16 PM
Well, well, and well. However it's coming too early. Like the saying goes, the leopard cannot change its color. Rouhani is a true Iranian, a chip of the old block. When he commented on Israel in a previous report, it became obvious that the expectation of change from the Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's acrimony against Israel was a misplaced one. Ahmadinejad hated Israel with a passion, but he sometimes made comments that could be considered suave. But Rouhani is a step above Ahmadinejad's hatred for Israel.

He is the one that will deceive the West and strike at Israel when no one expects it. How did anyone think Rouhani - a right hand man to Ali Khamenei - will be anything friendly with civilization and Israel? Saying one is a wound that should be removed is another way of re-echoing his predecessor's denial of the holocaust. Should he be the one to start the trouble? Good he has called his own name in the darkness of the unknown future. A problem understood is half solved, the other half solution is to take appropriate action. Hope Israel is watching.


by: Anonymous
August 02, 2013 8:52 AM
he never said that the wound needs to be "removed." get your facts correct or don't report

In Response

by: Les from: Worldwide
August 02, 2013 6:30 PM
It would be fair to say , that in present expansionism , Israel has no borders , which in brutality of their actions forgot to respect any International Law . If Zionists fear of healing the wounds , firstly should return occupied land and repay damages to Palestinians , than looking for peace , which they "love so much" . Arrogant demands , backed by possession of given to them nukes by US have no moral bases to expect Iranians waiting for provoked war , this time shorter than 6 days .

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calaisi
X
Lisa Bryant
September 19, 2014 5:04 PM
The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video CERN Accelerator Back in Business

The long upgrade of the Large Hadron Collider is over. The scientific instrument responsible for the discovery of the Higgs boson -- the so-called "God particle" -- is being brought up to speed in time for this month's 60th anniversary of the European Organization for Nuclear Research, known by its French acronym CERN. Physicists hope the accelerator will help them uncover more secrets about the origins of the universe. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid