Monday, November 07, 2005

Iran says to propose Mideast peace solution to UN

Iran, whose president has called for Israel's destruction, said on Monday it will submit a proposal to the United Nations for a peaceful solution to the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.

The Islamic Republic does not acknowledge Israel's right to exist and is known to support militant Palestinian groups.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called in a speech last month or Israel to be "wiped off the map", sparking international condemnation and Israeli calls for Iran to be thrown out of the United Nations.

Iranian officials have said his remarks were merely a re-statement of the Islamic state's pro-Palestinian policy and did not represent an actual threat of violence against Israel.

"To restore peace in the Middle East, Iran will submit a proposal to the U.N. based on what the Supreme Leader has said," Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki told a conference on Central Asia in Tehran.

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the last word on all state matters, said on Friday Palestinian refugees should be allowed to join all residents of Israel, the West Bank and Gaza in taking part in a referendum on how to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Israeli leaders say a return of Palestinian refugees to Israel would spell demographic suicide for the Jewish state. READ MORE