Iranian Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari underlined that the country‚Äôs Armed Forces are fully ready to repel any possible foreign threat, and said Iran does not allow alien vessels to pass through its territorial waters.
‚ÄúThe trans-regional countries which are present in the territories of the Arab states on the Southern rims of the Persian Gulf and their voyage to these countries takes place under the International Maritime Law, but their presence in Iran‚Äôs waters is not permitted; we are monitoring and controlling the boundaries of the Islamic Republic of Iran thoroughly,” Admiral Sayyari said on Monday.
Noting Iran’s control over its maritime borders, the Navy commander said in case any foreign vessel trespasses Iran’s maritime borders, “the Iranian Navy notifies them and they will immediately return to the international waters‚Äù.
Yet, he said, the presence of alien (trans-regional) parties in the Southern parts of the Persian Gulf is also seen as a disturbance to regional order and security.
The Iranian Navy commander pointed to the presence of the American and other foreign forces in the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman, and said, ‚ÄúThe Persian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz, Sea of Oman and Northern Indian Ocean and all of their interests and resources belong to the regional countries and the presence of any country in a region belonging to others results in disorder and can be regarded as a threat to all countries.‚Äù
He stressed that the Iranian Armed Forces enjoy high combat capabilities and can defend the country against any possible threat. ‚ÄúFor example the Bab Al-Mandeb region is a very important waterway for international trade and it has become insecure due to piracy and this insecurity is seen as a threat to Iran‚Äôs interests because different vessels, including the Islamic Republic of Iran‚Äôs merchant ships and oil tankers, pass through Bab Al-Mandeb, therefore we should protect the security of our ships and this is the inalienable right of any country.‚Äù
Earlier this month, the Iranian Navy commander announced that Iran has dispatched a flotilla of warships to the high seas, including the Red Sea, to protect the country‚Äôs cargo ships and oil tankers against pirate attacks.
‚ÄúOur presence in the open seas is aimed at restoring security,‚Äù Admiral Sayyari said, and added, ‚ÄúWe have the capability and readiness to navigate all the seas across the world.‚Äù
Also earlier this month, Admiral Sayyari underlined Iran’s tight and full control over the regional waters, specially the Strait of Hormuz.
‚ÄúAnyone who can establish security in the Strait of Hormuz, can close it in the shortest possible time but, we are not after closing the strait,‚Äù the Iranian navy commander said while stressing navy’s might and power to protect the Iranian waters against any possible aggression.
The Iranian Navy in August dispatched its 27th flotilla of warships to the high seas to protect the country’s cargo ships and oil tankers against pirates.
Admiral Sayyari said the 27th fleet was dispatched after the return of the 26th fleet of the Iranian Navy, comprised of the Bandar Abbas warship and the Alvand destroyer returned home.
Sayyari also said that the mission of the warships is to provide security for Iranian oil tankers and commercial ships sailing on the open seas.
He added that the 26th Fleet had operated in the Gulf of Aden, the Red Sea, and the Northern Indian Ocean during its mission on the open seas and visited a number of ports in Oman and Djibouti.
The Iranian Navy has been conducting anti-piracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden since November 2008, when Somali raiders hijacked the Iranian-chartered cargo ship, MV Delight, off the coast of Yemen.
According to UN Security Council resolutions, different countries can send their warships to the Gulf of Aden and coastal waters of Somalia against the pirates and even with prior notice to Somali government enter the territorial waters of that country in pursuit of Somali sea pirates.
The Gulf of Aden – which links the Indian Ocean with the Suez Canal and the Mediterranean Sea – is an important energy corridor, particularly because Persian Gulf oil is shipped to the West via the Suez Canal.