TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iran’s Foreign Ministry strongly slammed the escalation of Israeli atrocities against Palestinians and restrictions the regime has put on worshipers in al-Aqsa Mosque, slamming the Tel Aviv regime as the main source of state-sponsored terrorism and horror in the region.

In a statement released on Sunday, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi vehemently condemned Israel’s acts of aggression, its brutal crackdown against Palestinians, and its move to prevent Muslim worshipers from entering al-Aqsa Mosque to perform religious rites.

He also called on the free-thinking media, nations and countries of the world to voice their support for the oppressed nation of Palestine and stand firmly against the aggressions as well as inhumane moves of the Zionist occupiers, according to the Foreign Ministry’s website.

The holy Quds and al-Aqsa Mosque, as the first Qibla of Muslims, belong to all Muslim people around the world forever, he stressed, adding that Palestinians are the real owners of the occupied territories.

“The Zionist occupiers’ continued crackdown against Palestinians as well as the Israeli regime’s violation of Palestinians’ basic rights, particularly their religious freedoms and access to the holy sites in al-Quds, reveal … that the Zionist regime of Israel is the main symbol and source of state terrorism and scaremongering in the region,” the spokesperson said.

“We call on the international community, especially the United Nations, to address the recent regrettable developments in the occupied lands and to stand firmly against the religiously and racially discriminatory policies of the Zionists against the Palestinians,” Qassemi added.

Several Palestinians have been killed and hundreds more injured in recent weeks amid mass protests over new Israeli security measures at the al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

At least 3,000 Israeli police and border police units had been deployed to the area, according to a police spokesman.

Israel tightened its grip on the compound after two Israeli security officers were killed in an alleged attack by three Palestinians, who were killed by Israeli police following the violence.

Over the past week, there have been daily demonstrations and clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinians.