Commander of Islamic Revolution’s Guards Corps in a condolence letter to the Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah on Monday said Israel would be eliminated in the near future by warriors of the Lebanese resistance movement.

(Communicated by the Foreign Ministry Spokesman)

The Foreign Ministry, today (Monday), 18 February 2008, has instructed Israel’s Mission to the United Nations to submit a letter of complaint and protest to the President of the United Nations Security Council (Panamanian Ambassador Ricardo Alberto Arias) and to request that he issue a statement condemning Iran over the remarks of Revolutionary Guards Commander General Muhammad Ali Jafari, who said that, "I am convinced that Hizbullah’s might is increasing with every passing day and that in the near future, we will witness the disappearance of this cancerous growth called Israel."

Israel’s letter will note that Jafari’s remarks convey an expectation of the destruction of the State of Israel and that it are also an anti-Jewish, anti-Semitic and racist statement of the worst kind.

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"In the near future we will see the destruction of cancerous tumor Israel by the powerful and competent hands of Hezbollah fighters,“ Mohammad Ali Jafari was quoted as saying by Fars News Agency (18 Feb 2008). "The martyrdom of this selfless and devoted fighter will no doubt consolidate the will of his compatriots in confronting the Zionist regime," the senior military officer wrote. (Iran Daily)

Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told a rally in the southern city of Bandar Abbas broadcast on Iranian state television (20 Feb 2008): "World powers have created a black and dirty microbe named the Zionist regime and have unleashed it like a savage animal on the nations of the region." (Ynet)

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Text of letter from Israel Ambassador Gillerman to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon and President of the Security Council Ricardo Alberto Arias:

Excellency,

I write to inform you of the highly alarming and sinister remarks made by two senior members of the Iranian leadership threatening the State of Israel in the most offensive of terms. 

Last week, on Saturday, 16 February, the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported that Commander-General Muhammad Ali Jafari of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps wrote in a letter to Hizbullah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah, "I am convinced that Hizbullah’s might is increasing with every passing day and that in the near future, we will witness the disappearance of this cancerous growth called Israel."

Later the same day, the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of Iran, Major-General Hassan Firouzabadi, said in his own letter to Nasrallah, "the hero-breeding land of Lebanon … will nurture hundreds and thousands of such heroes … and that combatants of the Lebanese and Palestinian Islamic resistance will continue the struggle until the complete destruction of the Zionist regime and liberation of the entire Islamic land of Palestine."

Excellency, I remind you that this is not the first time that members of the Iranian establishment have publicly threatened the State of Israel. Moreover, these remarks, as reported by official news agencies in Iran, represent anti-Israel rhetoric and racism of the worst kind. It is wholly inexplicable and unjustifiable that the leadership of a Member State of the United Nations would liken another Member State to a "cancerous growth" and predict its annihilation, once again, in blatant violation of the United Nations Charter. Furthermore, article 3 (c) of the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide is explicit in its demand for States to punish and prosecute those that carryout “direct and public incitement to commit genocide”.

Israel calls on the international community to condemn without reservation these outrageous anti-Israel, anti-Semitic, and racist threats, which undoubtedly constitute direct and public incitement to commit genocide.

I should be grateful if you would circulate and include the contents of this letter as an official document of the Security Council. An identical letter has been sent to H.E. Mr. Ricardo Alberto Arias, President of the Security Council.

Allow me, Excellency, to renew to you the assurances of my highest consideration.

Yours truly,

Dan Gillerman
Ambassador
Permanent Representative

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UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said: "It is unacceptable and undesirable for a head of staet of a Member State of the United Nations to use such kind of language against any other Member State."