On Christmas day, Iranian dictator Ali Khamenei took to social media and reiterated comments he made previously about Jesus, the founder of Christianity.
His account posted on Twitter:
If Jesus Christ (Peace Be Upon Him) were among us today, he would not spare a second to fight the heads of oppression and global arrogance and he would not tolerate the hunger and puzzlement of billions of people who are being exploited and pushed towards war, corruption and warmongering by the big powers.
— Khamenei.ir (@khamenei_ir) December 25, 2015
In discussing the “arrogant powers” and “heads of oppression” in the past, Khamenei has used this terminology to refer to the United States and the “Zionist regime,” also known as Israel.
Recently, Khamenei blamed all of the problems in the Islamic world on the West, stating in comparable language:
Today, the evil policies of the US in this region which have resulted in war, bloodshed, destruction and displacement as well as poverty, backwardness and sectarian and religious rifts, on one hand, and the Zionist regime’s crimes… The painful events in the region, including Iraq, the Levant (Syria and its surrounding), Yemen and Bahrain, the West Bank, Gaza and certain other Asian and African states are the big problems of the Islamic Ummah that the fingertips of the world arrogance (the US and its allies) should be seen in them and their remedies should be found.
A modern Jesus would fight against the United States and Israel, Khamenei claims.
In recognition of “Jesus Christ’s birth anniversary,” Khamenei met with the mother of a “Christian martyr who lost life during the Iraq-Iran war,” reports state-controlled PressTV.
“The Christian minority – both Armenian and Assyrian – emerged honorably from the  revolution and the [1980s Iraqi-imposed] war, as loyal, wise, insightful and brave Iranians,” Khamenei said in comments during their meeting, the report stated.
Jesus is considered a prophet in the Islamic faith, which is also a mandatory view inside Iran. Anyone who recognizes Jesus as anything more or less than an Islamic prophet “has quitted Islam,” according to Khamenei.
In Iran, apostasy from Islam is punishable by death, so publicly recognizing Jesus as a non-prophetic figure or as someone superior to a prophet can result in serious repercussions.