Iran Calls on US to ‘Stop Hypocrisy’ in Gaza War

Members of the Iranian parliament chant slogans in support of Hamas on Oct. 7. (IRNA)
Members of the Iranian parliament chant slogans in support of Hamas on Oct. 7. (IRNA)
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Iran Calls on US to ‘Stop Hypocrisy’ in Gaza War

Members of the Iranian parliament chant slogans in support of Hamas on Oct. 7. (IRNA)
Members of the Iranian parliament chant slogans in support of Hamas on Oct. 7. (IRNA)

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian called on the United States to stop its “hypocrisy” in the Gaza war.

“More than 120 countries called for an end to the war. Millions of people took to the streets in cities around the globe, including Washington, in support of Palestine and to condemn ‘war crimes’. Yet, the White House prefers to be complicit and abet the collapsing regime of Israel at the expense of countering the global public opinion,” he said on X.

“Since last week, America has been after a humanitarian ceasefire. We received their message. They are completely wrong... They are running the game of war against Gaza and the West Bank simultaneously. Stop hypocrisy and genocide against Gaza,” he continued.

Abdollahian’s post came hours after Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammad Shia Al-Sudani met in Tehran with Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and President Ibrahim Raisi, a day after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s visit to Baghdad.

With the escalation of the war of words between Iran and Israel, US forces in Iraq and Syria have been subjected to almost daily attacks since Oct. 17 by Iranian-backed armed groups. In response, US forces launched air strikes last week on two unmanned weapons storage facilities in Syria.

Meanwhile, Iranian Defense Minister Mohammad Reza Ashtiani said on Tuesday that Israel will not achieve any of its goals in Gaza.

He added: “The support of America and the West for the crimes of the Zionist entity will increase the complications of the regional security situation,” Tasnim agency reported.

In turn, Iranian Interior Minister Ahmed Vahidi said on Tuesday that the Gaza developments are an “indication of a radical change in regional equations.”

The government-affiliated ISNA agency quoted the minister as saying: “The events in the Gaza Strip are taking place in an area of 350 kilometers, but they have brought about profound cultural changes.”

Vahidi, a prominent leader in the Revolutionary Guards, added that this “profound development” was not limited to Palestine, stressing that the demonstrations at universities, such as Harvard and Oxford, are “manifestations of this change.”

Iranian ambassador to Vienna Abbas Bagherpour warned of the consequences of the war in Gaza on Europe.

“What we are witnessing in Palestine is a failed international system, a broken United Nations, and defective international law,” he said on X, adding: “This situation will lead to devastating chaos for the collective security system.”



Ukraine Realizes a Dream as It Launches EU Membership Talks, but Joining Is Likely to Take Years

Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister for European Affairs Olga Stefanishyna (6-L, front row) poses with European affairs ministers and representatives at the first meeting of the Conference on Accession of Ukraine to the European Union in Luxembourg, 25 June 2024. (EPA)
Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister for European Affairs Olga Stefanishyna (6-L, front row) poses with European affairs ministers and representatives at the first meeting of the Conference on Accession of Ukraine to the European Union in Luxembourg, 25 June 2024. (EPA)
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Ukraine Realizes a Dream as It Launches EU Membership Talks, but Joining Is Likely to Take Years

Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister for European Affairs Olga Stefanishyna (6-L, front row) poses with European affairs ministers and representatives at the first meeting of the Conference on Accession of Ukraine to the European Union in Luxembourg, 25 June 2024. (EPA)
Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister for European Affairs Olga Stefanishyna (6-L, front row) poses with European affairs ministers and representatives at the first meeting of the Conference on Accession of Ukraine to the European Union in Luxembourg, 25 June 2024. (EPA)

The European Union launched membership talks with Ukraine on Tuesday, a decade after Russian troops seized the Crimean Peninsula to deter the country from moving closer to the West, part of a chain of events that set the two neighbors on the path to war.

Ukraine’s accession negotiations were set in motion at an intergovernmental conference in Luxembourg. Moldova is also due to launch its membership talks later Tuesday. While the events are a major milestone on their European paths, the talks could take years to conclude.

In opening remarks presented via video-link, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal described it as “a historic day” that marks “a new chapter” in his country’s ties with the bloc, particularly as the war with Russia rages on.

“We fully understand that there is still much work ahead of us on the path to accession. We are ready for it. We have demonstrated that we can move swiftly and achieve the impossible,” Shmyhal said.

Belgian Foreign Minister Hadja Lahbib, whose country currently holds the EU’s rotating presidency, described it as “a historic moment for us all, and marks a milestone in our relationship.”

Lahbib said the EU condemns “Russia’s unjustified and unprovoked war of aggression against Ukraine and salutes the resilience of the Ukrainian people,” and added that the bloc will continue to support Ukraine in the war “for as long as it takes and as intensely as needed.”

Ukraine's delegation was led in Luxembourg by deputy prime minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration Olga Stefanishyna. “This is a truly historical moment for my country. All the nation stands as one behind this decision,” she told reporters as she arrived for the ceremony.

Stefanishyna said the hope embodied in the opening of the talks will give Ukraine's citizens “the moral power to continue withstanding” the Russian invasion.

The intergovernmental conference officially started the process of aligning the country’s laws and standards with those of the 27-nation bloc, which is notably concerned about corruption in Ukraine. However, the actual negotiations are unlikely to begin for a few months.

Both Ukraine and Moldova applied to join the EU in the days and weeks after Russia invaded in February 2022. By June 2022, EU leaders had quickly made it all official. But things have moved more slowly since then for Kyiv and membership, if it comes, might be years away.

Türkiye's accession talks have lasted almost two decades without result.

Still, starting the talks process is sending another strong signal of solidarity with Ukraine beyond the financial support the EU has provided, which officials estimate at around 100 billion euros ($107 billion). It’s also a show of support for Moldova, which has faced its own challenges with Russia.

Candidate countries must bring their laws and standards into line with those of the EU in 35 policy areas, known as chapters, ranging from the free movement of goods through fisheries, taxation, energy and the environment to judicial rights and security.

Unanimous agreement must be given by all 27 member countries to open or close chapters, providing ample opportunity for EU nations to demand more work or to delay proceedings.

Hungary, which takes over the EU’s rotating presidency from Belgium in July, has routinely put the brakes on EU and NATO support for Ukraine.

“We are still at the beginning of the screening process. It’s very difficult to say at what stage Ukraine is in. From what I see here, as we speak, they are very far from meeting the accession criteria,” Hungarian Minister for European Affairs Janos Boka said as he arrived at the venue.

Bordering EU members Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania, Ukraine would overtake France to become the largest member of the bloc if it joined, shifting its center of gravity further eastward. As a top grain producer its entry would have a huge impact on EU agriculture policy.

Together with Moldova, Ukraine stands in a long line of EU hopefuls — Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia and Türkiye — with years-long membership aspirations and which have felt left behind by Kyiv’s rapid progress.

Ukraine wants to join by 2030, but it must carry out dozens of institutional and legal reforms first. That daunting list is led by steps to combat corruption and includes broad reforms to public administration and judiciary.