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Iran says foreign forces threaten regional security

July 28, 2019 at 2:37 pm

Oil tankers seen at the Al-Basra Oil Terminal in Iraq, 16 May 2017 [Samuel W. Shavers/Wikipedia]

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Sunday foreign forces pose a threat to regional security, according to the official IRNA news agency, Anadolu Agency reports.

“Iran has always tried to help ensure safety of free shipping in the Gulf of Oman, the Persian Gulf, and the Strait of Hormuz,” Rouhani said during his meeting with Omani Foreign Minister Yusuf bin Alawi in Tehran.

On Monday, the UK called for a European-led maritime mission to ensure safe passage around the Persian Gulf, following Iran’s seizure of a British-flagged tanker in a retaliatory move after the capture of an Iranian-flagged vessel off Gibraltar, a British overseas territory that abuts southern Spain.

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Tehran, for its part, described the European plans as “hostile” and “provocative”.

“Iran has never been the initiator of tension in the region,” Rouhani said. “The current tensions are rooted in the US unilateral withdrawal from the nuclear deal and the illusions of Washington.”

The Iranian president also condemned Britain’s seizure of an Iranian oil tanker off Gibraltar.

“Iran will stand against any form of law-breaking act that threatens the security of traffic in the Persian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz and Gulf of Oman,” he said.