Iran expresses readiness for dispatching millions of militia to Gaza
Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 17
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
The commander of Iran's Basij force, Mohamad Reza Naghdi said that millions of Iranian Basij members are ready to go to Gaza and Syria, the country's Fars news agency reported Nov. 17.
Basij is a conservative volunteer militia that is a branch of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).
Naghdi said that over 22 million people are Basij members, adding the force also includes 2,000 military battalions.
Earlier in September Naghdi said that Basij has commenced relief and donation efforts for the reconstruction of Gaza after the 50-day war with Israel.
A number of other Iranian commanders also made statements about help from the Islamic Republic to Palestinian groups.
Basij also opened a bank account to collect money for buying weapons for Palestinians last July, referring to remarks by Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
On July 23, Khamenei stated that the only solution for the region is the destruction of Israel, and that the armed confrontation must expand beyond Gaza.
"We believe that the West Bank should also be armed like Gaza and those who are interested in Palestine's destiny should act in this regard," Khamenei said.
Last week Lieutenant Commander of the IRGC Aerospace Force Brigadier General Seyed Majid Moussavi announced that the "Lebanese and Palestinian resistance groups (Hezbollah and Hamas)" are in possession of Fateh-class missiles which were developed by Iran a few years ago.
"Considering the range of their missiles, they are able now to attack all targets from Southern to Northern parts of Israel," he said.
"Based on what has been announced so far, their operational missile capability includes a fully vast but of course hidden, (number and type of) Fateh class missiles, and this missile capability can be used and has been organized," Moussavi added.
Fateh ballistic missiles have a range of 250-300 kilometers.
Edited by CN