Iran ‘will hit Western warships if attacked’
Tehran, January 19, 2010
Iran's defence minister warned on Tuesday that the Islamic Republic could strike back at Western warships in the Gulf if it were attacked over its nuclear programme, the semi-official Fars news agency reported.
Ahmad Vahidi said there were now more than 90 war vessels in the Gulf -- a waterway crucial for global oil supplies -- and that they had created a 'military environment' there.
They included submarines, aircraft carriers and destroyers, he said during a conference in Tehran on the Gulf.
'What is the reason underlying the deployment of this many warships and what aim are they pursuing ... are they arrayed against Iran?' Fars quoted Vahidi as saying.
'The Westerners know well that the existence of these warships in the Persian Gulf serve as the best operational targets for Iran if they should want to undertake any military action against Iran,' he said.
Iran has often warned it would retaliate for any attack on its nuclear facilities, which the West suspects form part of a drive to develop bombs. Tehran denies the charge.
Neither Israel nor the US have ruled out military action if diplomacy fails to resolve the long running row over Iran's disputed nuclear ambitions.
'The Americans have made conflicting comments (on the possibility of an attack on Iran),' the official IRNA news agency quoted Vahidi as saying.
Last month, Vahidi said Iran would strike back at Israeli weapons manufacturing sites and nuclear installations if the Jewish state attacked the Islamic Republic's nuclear facilities.
Israel is believed to be the only nuclear-armed Middle East state. Iran has often said it has missiles able to reach the Jewish state.
Iran, the world's fifth largest oil exporter, says its nuclear work is aimed at generating electricity, not making bombs, but its failure to convince world powers about the peaceful nature of its work has led to UN and US sanctions. – Reuters
More Miscellaneous Stories
- Death penalty sought for Bahrain terrorists
- Girl, 9, dies after fall from 8th floor in Abu Dhabi
- Lebanese café brand opens Dubai outlet
- Bahrain poultry firm told to step up safety
- Customer dies in Bahrain cafe brawl
- Bahraini boys hurt while planting bombs
- Philips, Ericsson launch LED street lighting
- DuBiotech to set up first Halal safety lab
- Jotun to supply coatings for Makkah Station
- Raytheon wins $655m Kuwait Patriot deal
- Alwaleed Foundation lights up 3 Saudi villages
- Poultry farms strike may trigger shortages in Bahrain
- Oman seals Victoria food security pact
- Saudi woman, 80, donates $133m to charity
- New Saudi clamp on energy drinks
- Outrage follows Bahrain killer bomb
- Improvised explosive device used in Bahrain attack
- 3 policemen killed in Bahrain blast
- Dammam-Al Ahsa train service starts
- Egypt wheat supplies enough to last until June
- Expat killed at Saudi workers' holding facility
- 80 global speakers for Doha summit on family
- Restaurant runs up $47,555 phone bill in 4 days
- NZ minister to visit Gulf states
- Public-private tie-ups ‘vital for agri growth’
- China firm wins solar power project in Amman
- 15,000 attend Bahrain garden show
- Omani firms shine at top food expo
- Bahrain to set up national food company
- Dozens hurt in gas leak at plant near Doha