TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – Iran’s Foreign Ministry lambasted as a “clear violation of international law” the US secretary of state’s declaration that Israeli settlements on the occupied Palestinian territories were no longer considered illegal.

– Politics news –

In a statement on Thursday, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi roundly condemned the announcement by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank were not deemed “inconsistent with international law.”

The Iranian spokesman also described the declaration as a testimony to the US government’s partnership in the occupation of the Palestinian territories, in Israeli crimes against Palestine, and in occupation and violation of the sovereignty of Palestine’s neighboring countries.

The US officials’ measures and remarks on Palestine amount to a clear violation of international law, Mousavi added, urging international organizations to oppose and counter them.

Palestine belongs to Palestinians, the spokesman reiterated, saying, “The Zionist regime is a usurping and occupying regime and the only solution to the Palestinian crisis would be holding a referendum involving the (genuine) people of the Palestinian land.”

He went on to advise Pompeo to set himself free from the “18th century-style thoughts” according to which owners of power placed themselves above the law and international regulations.

“In the 21st century, neither is the US a dominant power, nor would anyone accept a violation of international law by owners of power,” the Iranian spokesperson concluded.

In comments on Monday, Pompeo rejected a 1978 State Department legal opinion that considered the Israeli settlements in Palestine “inconsistent with international law.”

“Calling the establishment of civilian settlements inconsistent with international law has not advanced the cause of peace… The hard truth is that there will never be a judicial resolution to the conflict, and arguments about who is right and who is wrong as a matter of international law will not bring peace,” said Pompeo.