An Iranian military commander called on Islamic countries to cut oil exports to Israel’s supporters in response to the Jewish state’s offensive in Gaza, the official IRNA news agency reported on Sunday.
IRNA said commander Bagherzadeh described oil as “one of the powerful elements of pressure” on the Jewish state’s Western backers in the “unequal war” faced by Palestinians in the coastal strip.
“Pointing at Westerners’ dependence on the Islamic countries’ oil and energy resources, he (Bagherzadeh) called for cutting the export of crude oil to the Zionist regime’s supporters the world over,” IRNA said, referring to Israel.
IRNA gave only the commander’s last name but it may have been referring to Mirfeysal Bagherzadeh, a brigadier-general of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards. There was no immediate comment from other Iranian officials.
Iran, which often rails against the United States and Israel, is the world’s fourth-largest oil producer and a leading member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). Top exporter Saudi Arabia is a U.S. ally.
Israeli soldiers and Palestinian militants battled in Gaza on Sunday after Israeli troops and tanks invaded the coastal enclave in the most serious fighting in the conflict in decades.
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Israeli artillery fire shells towards the Gaza Strip. Thousands of Israeli troops backed by scores of tanks are battling Hamas fighters in Gaza fields and roads, surrounding the battered territory’s main city on a mission to end militant rocket attacks.(AFP/Shay Shmueli)