Iran’s Foreign Ministry has dismissed rumors of the country’s military forces entering foreign vessels passing through the Persian Gulf and Arabian Sea, warning against such false reports spread by Western and Zionist media .
Saeed Khatibzadeh, the Foreign Office spokesman, made the remark in an interview with Tasnim news agency on Tuesday after British sources reported the “potential hijacking” of a British ship off the coast. from the Fujairah region in the United Arab Emirates.
British authorities claimed the Panamanian-flagged tanker Asphalt Princess had been hijacked and said they were “working on the hypothesis that the Iranian military or proxies boarded the ship” in the Gulf of Oman.
Khatibzadeh categorically dismissed as “false” the reports disseminated by Western and Israeli media about the involvement of the Iranian armed forces in the incident.
The Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman also called on all parties to be vigilant against the spread of fake news, given the conflicting reports on maritime security in the region.
Successive maritime incidents in the “suspicious” region
Khatibzadeh earlier described a number of reported security incidents involving ships in the Persian Gulf region as “suspicious” and warned against any effort to create a “vicious atmosphere to pursue certain political goals”.
Khatibzadeh said Iran is pursuing the policy of establishing security and stability in the region, adding that the Islamic Republic provides naval support to ships passing through the strategic waters of the Persian Gulf and the Arabian Sea.
“Iranian naval forces are ready to provide naval support, if needed, to transiting ships in the region,” he said. “If there are any problems in the navigation systems, the Islamic Republic of Iran stands ready to provide assistance and investigate the matter closely.”
Khatibzadeh also expressed Iran’s willingness to cooperate with regional countries to strengthen maritime security and surveillance of naval transit routes.
The latest incident comes less than a week after the US and UK joined Israel in accusing Iran of orchestrating Thursday’s attack on an Israeli tanker off Oman, despite Tehran’s firm denial.
Zodiac Maritime, the Israeli company that runs the Mercer Street tanker, said in a statement that two crew members, a Briton and a Romanian, were killed in the assault.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry says accusations leveled against Tehran by Israel and the US over the attack on the Israeli-owned ship in the Arabian Sea are ‘childish’ and influenced by the Zionist lobby in the US .
Khatibzadeh also warned on Monday against any possible act of adventurism against the country’s interests after the maritime incidents, promising an “immediate, powerful and serious” response to such a move.
In recent months, several other Israeli ships have been attacked on various shipping routes around the world.
Last month, a fire broke out on an Israeli-owned freighter after it was hit by an “unidentified weapon” in the northern Indian Ocean. Lebanon’s al-Mayadeen TV channel said at the time that the Israeli ship was en route to the coast of the United Arab Emirates when it came under attack.
The attacks come against the backdrop of the Israeli regime’s relentless attacks on cargo ships in the Persian Gulf region and elsewhere.
Iran’s response to ‘open and frank’ aggression
In an interview with Press TV on Tuesday, Iran’s Armed Forces Chief of Staff Major General Mohammad Hossein Baqeri said any response to Israeli acts of aggression against the Islamic Republic would be “open and frank”. .
Rejecting Western claims that Iran was behind the recent deadly attack on the Israeli-run Mercer Street vessel off Oman, Baqeri pointed out that whenever Israel suffers a setback, the regime and its allies are rushing to bring charges against Iran without any evidence or investigation. .
Iran’s top military commander also said that Israel itself is responsible for the consequences of its actions and that it is natural that Israel would receive a response from those it has targeted.
Meanwhile, the Iranian armed forces’ main spokesman, Brigadier General Abolfazl Shekarchi, dismissed anti-Tehran allegations and said Tel Aviv and its allies were waging a media war against the Islamic Republic, using war psychological and creating pretexts for adventurism.
“The conflicting reports from some Western, Zionist and Saudi media on any maritime insecurity and diversion in the waters of the region is a kind of psychological operation and lays the groundwork for new adventures,” Shekarchi said.
The spokesman said that the Iranian armed forces were fully prepared to counter any suspicious movement in regional waters, while expressing the Islamic Republic’s readiness to provide any assistance and to send rescue units at the request of ships. strangers.