Iranian top military commanders continue to threaten possible confrontations with “hostile states” in the Strait of Hormuz after US officials dismissed previous remarks as “rhetoric,” Kurdistan 24 reported.
“Our armed forces never underestimate the threats our enemies utter and will stand up to enemies by enhancing their capabilities,” Major General Mohammad Bagheri, Chief of the General Staff of Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran, told state-owned ParsToday on Wednesday.
Maj. Gen. Bagheri’s words came after the twenty-first national meeting between commanders and officials of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’s (IRGC) navy, which took place in Mashhad—the second most populous city in the country.
The commander added, “If hostile states continue to break international law in the Strait of Hormuz, they will be confronted with military action from the navy.”
Standing next to the Bagheri during the interview with the Iranian outlet was Gen. Alireza Tangsiri, commander of the IRGC navy, who on Monday affirmed that Iran controlled the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz and that the US Navy should leave.
“We can ensure the security of the Persian Gulf, and there is no need for the presence of aliens like the US and the countries whose home is not here.”
On Tuesday, shortly before a press briefing in the Pentagon US Secretary of Defense James Mattis spoke with reporters and described Tangsiri’s statement as “rhetoric.” During the presser Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Joseph Dunford affirmed, “for decades our forces have been postured in the Gulf to ensure freedom of navigation, and we’ll continue to do that.”
“[Tehran’s] enemies should know that the Persian Gulf is not a good place for fighting and conflict for them because as their [American] experts say, they [the US] lack the ability to face off against the Islamic Republic of Iran,” Bagheri concluded.