“We call for immediate action to take a firm stand against these crimes and mobilize Arab, Islamic and international support to prevent the Zionist enemy from continuing its brutal crimes against the Palestinian people and their land and sanctities in the occupied city of al-Quds, especially the Holy al-Aqsa Mosque,” Ismail Haniyeh wrote in his letter to Ayatollah Khamenei.
He said the Israeli regime must be forced to immediately stop its terrorist actions against the besieged Gaza Strip and the occupied al-Quds and al-Aqsa Mosque, as well as its policy of Judaizing al-Quds and displacing Palestinians there.
The Hamas official added that the Zionist regime must also be compelled to cancel all cruel eviction rulings in the occupied al-Quds, especially in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood.
Haniyeh further demanded an end to the Zionists’ violence against al-Aqsa Mosque in a way that Palestinian worshipers would be able to freely perform their religious rituals at the holy site.
Israel began the aerial bombardment of the Gaza Strip on May 10, after weeks of violence against Palestinians at the al-Aqsa Mosque compound, where Israeli forces and settlers attacked Palestinian worshipers, and in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, where the regime tried to force Palestinians out of their homes to build more illegal settlements.
In response, Palestinian resistance groups have fired thousands of rockets at Israeli-occupied territories.
The bombardment campaign against Gaza has so far killed at least 230 Palestinians, 65 children and 39 women, with at least 1,710 others wounded.
“Due to the escalation of the aggression and crimes of the occupying regime against the nation and the sanctities of Palestine, we have established extensive contacts with various parties and asked them to prevent the perpetuation of the crimes and evil goals of the enemy, and we warned that these crimes will certainly not go unanswered by the Palestinian people and resistance,” the Hamas leader noted.
“The insistence of the criminal rulers of the Zionist regime on pressing ahead with their aggression against the people, the land and the sanctities of Palestine required a decisive and legitimate response through resistance [fighters] in the Gaza Strip,” he added.
Haniyeh further said the Israeli regime uses the deadliest of forbidden weapons to commit the most heinous cruelties against the people of Gaza in addition to perpetrating the gravest crimes against protesters in al-Quds, the West Bank and the 1948 occupied territories.
“The Zionists are heavily bombing government and security centers, residential areas and infrastructure in Gaza, preventing Palestinians’ access to food and medicine. They have also cut supply of natural gas and electricity to Palestinians,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Gaza Media Office in Gaza has estimated the material losses the Gaza Strip has suffered during Israel’s relentless attacks to be more than $322m.
So far, at least 184 residential towers, houses, and 33 media centers have been completely destroyed, while over 1,335 housing units have been completely or severely demolished and some 13,000 others partially damaged.
The new letter followed a Tuesday letter by Haniyeh to the Leader of the Islamic Revolution in which the Palestinian official said Israel’s continued acts of aggression against the Palestinian people and their sanctities necessitated a firm response from the resistance movement in Gaza, calling on for joint global efforts to end the regime’s atrocities against the Palestinians in Gaza and the occupied territories.
Given the intensification of the occupying Israeli regime’s acts of aggression against the Palestinian people, Hamas held extensive contacts with various parties, asking them to stop the enemy from advancing its crimes and sinister goals and warning that the Palestinian people and resistance would not let these crimes go unanswered, Haniyeh said.
Last June, Haniyeh wrote a letter to political leaders in the Arab and Muslim world, asking them to join hands in defense of the Palestinian cause, and devise mechanisms to stop Israel’s plan to annex large parts of the occupied West Bank.
“We believe in the role and historical responsibility of political parties and organizations across the Arab and Muslim world for Palestine and its just cause, protection of Palestinian lands as well as support for the legitimate rights of the Palestinian nation,” Haniyeh wrote in that letter.
He also called for urgent action to confront the Tel Aviv regime’s “criminal and racist” decision to expropriate swathes of Palestinian land in the West Bank, Jerusalem al-Quds and the Jordan Valley.