Tehran: Iranian president says comments on Israel are standard Iranian policy

Hard-line Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Sunday that his recent comments that Israel should be "wiped off the map" represent Iran's long-standing policy on the Jewish state and don't mark a change in position.

Iran does not recognize the existence of Israel and Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic republic, had repeatedly called for its destruction, describing it as a tumor that should be removed from the Middle East.

Ahmadinejad blamed Western media for what he called distortion of his comments and failure to report them accurately. On Wednesday, Ahmadinejad said the Jewish state be "wiped off the map," a comment that drew international criticism. Iran has been on the defensive since the president made the comments.

On Friday, the Iranian Foreign Ministry said it was treated unfairly by the U.N. Security Council after the international body issued a statement reminding Iran that, according to the U.N. charter, member states must refrain from threatening to use force against each other. The ministry said Iran stood behind its commitments based on the U.N. charter and had never used or threatened to use force against another country, AP reports.


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