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News number: 9106063230

18:31 | 2012-09-12

Defence

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Iran Warns of Negative Impacts of US-Led Military Drills in Persian Gulf

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehman-Parast warned of the negative consequences of an impending US-led military exercises in the Persian Gulf for the regional security and stability, underlining that Tehran will closely monitor the wargames.



Mehman-Parast said that the military drills are a "very sensitive phenomenon", specially given the tensions between Iran and the US.

The US-led exercises are to include minesweeping operations seen as a direct response to Iranian warnings earlier this year that it could close the strategic oil shipping routes through the Strait of Hormuz in retaliation for tighter Western sanctions.

The region has been experiencing increasing tensions after the Israeli regime intensified its war rhetoric against Iran in recent months.

Iran has warned that it would target Israel and its worldwide interests in case it comes under attack by the Tel Aviv.

Israel and its close ally the United States accuse Iran of seeking a nuclear weapon, while they have never presented any corroborative document to substantiate their allegations. Both Washington and Tel Aviv possess advanced weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear warheads.

Iran vehemently denies the charges, insisting that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only. Tehran stresses that the country has always pursued a civilian path to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population, whose fossil fuel would eventually run dry.

The United States has also always stressed that military action is a main option for the White House to deter Iran's progress in the field of nuclear technology.

Iran has warned that in case of an attack by either the US or Israel, it will target the worldwide interests of both arch foes, including 32 American bases in the Middle East, and close the strategic Strait of Hormuz.

An estimated 40 percent of the world's oil supply passes through the waterway.

A recent study by the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS), a prestigious American think tank, has found that a military strike on Iran's nuclear facilities "is unlikely" to delay the country's program.

The ISIS study also cautioned that an attack against Iran would backfire by compelling the country to acquire nuclear weaponry.

A recent study by a fellow at Harvard's Olin Institute for Strategic Studies, Caitlin Talmadge, warned that Iran could use mines as well as missiles to block the strait, and that "it could take many weeks, even months, to restore the full flow of commerce, and more time still for the oil markets to be convinced that stability has returned".

In a Sep. 11, 2008 report, the Washington Institute for the Near East Policy also said that in the two decades since the Iran-Iraq War, the Islamic Republic has excelled in naval capabilities and is able to wage unique asymmetric warfare against larger naval forces.
According to the report, the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Navy (IRGCN) has been transformed into a highly motivated, well-equipped, and well-financed force and is effectively in control of the world's oil lifeline, the Strait of Hormuz.

The study says that if Washington takes military action against the Islamic Republic, the scale of Iran's response would likely be proportional to the scale of the damage inflicted on Iranian assets.