Iran president doubts Holocaust, suggests Israel move to Europe

By Reuters

Haaretz

Kislev 8, 5766

TEHRAN - Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Thursday expressed doubt that the Holocaust occurred and suggested Israel be moved to Europe.

His comments, reported by the official IRNA news agency from a news conference he gave in the Saudia Arabian city of Mecca, follow his call in October for Israel to be "wiped off the map", which sparked widespread international condemnation.

"Some European countries insist on saying that Hitler killed millions of innocent Jews in furnaces and they insist on it to the extent that if anyone proves something contrary to that they condemn that person and throw them in jail," IRNA quoted Ahmadinejad as saying.

"Although we don't accept this claim, if we suppose it is true, we ask the Europeans: Is the killing of innocent Jewish people by Hitler the reason for their support to the occupiers of Jerusalem?"

"If the Europeans are honest they should give some of their provinces in Europe -- like in Germany, Austria or other countries -- to the Zionists and the Zionists can establish their state in Europe. You offer part of Europe and we will support it," he added.

Earlier in his speech, the Iranian president said: "The question is where do those who rule in Palestine as occupiers come from? Where were they born? Where did their fathers live? They have no roots in Palestine but they have taken the fate of Palestine in their hands?

"Isn't the right to national self-determination one of the principles of the United Nations charter? Why do they deprive Palestinians of this right?" he said.

Close allies when Iran was ruled by the U.S.-backed Shah, Iran and Israel have become implacable foes since Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution.

Israel accuses Iran of giving arms and funding to militant Palestinian groups such as Islamic Jihad and of building nuclear weapons. Iran denies the charges.

Tehran calls Israel a "terrorist state" and has developed missiles that can reach Israel. It says it would use them if Israel tried to bomb its nuclear facilities.