Friday, January 15, 2010

Islamic Jihad admits it gets money from Iran

Asharq al-Awsat interviewed Abu Ahmed, spokesman for Islamic Jihad's Al Quds Brigades:
Abu Ahmed admitted that getting weapons into the Gaza Strip has become a difficult proposition, accusing some Arabs countries – who he refused to specify – and Israel, of cooperating to prevent the entry of weapons into the Gaza Strip. Abu Ahmed refused to disclose the state of the Islamic Jihad rocket stockpiles; however he did say that money and weapons reach the movement through "loyal sons of the nation."

Abu Ahmed confirmed that the majority of aid coming to the Islamic Jihad movement comes from individuals and organizations abroad, rather than states. He also said that Iran is the country that most aids the Islamic Jihad movement, saying "Our relationship with Iran is a relationship built upon mutual respect, like the rest of our relations with the resistance and opposition forces in all parts of the globe. Iran is the country that most supports the resistance in every place, not just Palestine. This is an honorable position, one that can be attested to by those near and far and that is why we respect and appreciate Iran."

Abu Ahmed described the Iranian support as being "first class financial support and it is directed specifically towards the families of martyrs, prisoners, and the injured and for charity projects."

Abu Ahmed refused to answer a question about whether Hamas gets more aid from Iran [than the Islamic Jihad movement], saying "I do not know [the answer] to this, I do not know how much Iran aids Hamas or other resistance forces."
Islamic Jihad has been described as "the Palestinian organization most loyal to the Iranian revolutionary ideology" even though it is Sunni, not Shiite.