Criticising the communal violence that claimed 53 lives in the national capital two weeks ago, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei said Thursday that the Indian government should confront extremist Hindus and stop the ‘massacre’ of Muslims.
“The hearts of Muslims all over the world are grieving over the massacre of Muslims in India. The govt of India should confront extremist Hindus & their parties & stop the massacre of Muslims in order to prevent India’s isolation from the world of Islam,” Khamenei tweeted.
The hearts of Muslims all over the world are grieving over the massacre of Muslims in India. The govt of India should confront extremist Hindus & their parties & stop the massacre of Muslims in order to prevent India’s isolation from the world of Islam.#IndianMuslimslnDanger
— Khamenei.ir (@khamenei_ir) March 5, 2020
Khamenei’s remarks came three days after Iran became the fourth Muslim-majority country to officially react to the communal violence that threw life out of gear in northeast Delhi. Earlier this week, India had summoned Iranian Ambassador in New Delhi Ali Chegeni and lodged a strong protest against, what it called, “unwarranted” remarks by Iranian Foreign minister Javad Zarif.
Zarif had tweeted Monday night: “Iran condemns the wave of organised violence against Indian Muslims. For centuries, Iran has been a friend of India. We urge Indian authorities to ensure the wellbeing of ALL Indians & not let senseless thuggery prevail. Path forward lies in peaceful dialogue and rule of law.”
Tehran had last criticised India after the 2002 Gujarat riots and a decade earlier after the 1992 Babri Masjid demolition. New Delhi had earlier rejected comments from Turkey, Malaysia and Pakistan which had spoken out against the riots over the last week. Malaysia and Bangladesh too had earlier criticised the citizenship law (CAA) and the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC).
Meanwhile, the death toll in communal violence that broke out in northeast Delhi last month, which was sparked by protests over CAA, climbed to 53 on Thursday. So far, GTB hospital has confirmed 44 deaths while three deaths have been confirmed at Lok Nayak hospital and five at RML and one at Jag Pravesh.
According to Delhi Police, 654 FIRs have been filed following violence that ravaged Maujpur, Jafrabad, Shiv Vihar, Mustafabad and Brijpuri. The police further said 1820 people have been detained and 47 peace committee meetings held in affected localities.
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