The Iranian-backed Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terrorist organization has announced it is arming terror groups linked to the Palestinian Authority’s ruling Fatah faction.
PIJ terror chief Ziyad Nakhaleh told the Iranian Al-Vefagh newspaper in an interview published Saturday that Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is encouraging “moving from a state of calm to one of resistance” in Palestinian Authority territories.
Nakhaleh, who is based in Damascus, met recently with the Iranian leader in Tehran, according to the report. During the visit, the Ayatollah encouraged Nakhaleh to “advance arming the West Bank and resistance action,” the PIJ leader said.
“We in the Islamic Jihad movement worked and are working to form combat battalions in all Palestinian cities in the West Bank,” he said. “The size and ability of these battalions vary from one place to another, according to our ability to arm and provide the most capabilities for these battalions.
“We have benefitted from opening up to the bases of the Fatah movement. In [their bases] there are segments that oppose the settlements and the [Palestinian Authority] and also have influence in the territories. We decided to open up to these segments and provide them with aid. Arming these groups and their presence helped in extending the state of resistance,” Nakhaleh said.
“The most important thing is that we strengthen the resistance; we are fully convinced that one day the existence of ‘Israel’ will end. If we are weak, it may end after 100 years but if we are strong and have the ability, resistance, perseverance and readiness for sacrifice it can end in 20 years. We are fully convinced that ‘ Israel’ will inevitably disappear,” he added.