Iran will give ‘harshest response’ to slightest threats: Top commander

A top Iranian army commander says the country has managed to reach high levels of power and dominance that it will not hesitate to give the “harshest response” to even the slightest threats.

“Wherever the interests of the Islamic establishment are in danger, we stand firm and defend our interests,” Deputy Chief of the Iranian Army for Coordination Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari said on Saturday.

He noted that faith and unity are among key factors behind the Iranian nation’s victory over the enemies’ plots, yet cautioned the enemies of the “harshest response” should they dare make the slightest threat against the country.

Sayyari emphasized that preserving territorial integrity, playing a role in the international scene, strengthening national security and deterrent power, and maintaining full readiness of the Armed Forces are among the achievements of the Islamic Revolution.

Elsewhere in his remarks, the admiral pointed to the presence of the Iranian Navy in international waters and said the country’s naval forces have succeeded in escorting and protecting almost 5,000 oil tankers and commercial ships since 2008.

The Iranian Navy also thwarted numerous pirate attacks to secure the safe passage of the ships, Sayyari maintained.

The advanced capabilities of Iran’s Armed Forces expose the country’s great and exemplary power, he said, adding that the Iranian Armed Forces are “able to defend the interests of the Islamic establishment [even] at a distance of 2,500 km off Iran’s coasts.”

In line with international efforts against piracy, the Iranian Navy has been conducting patrols in the Gulf of Aden since November 2008, safeguarding merchant containers and oil tankers owned or leased by Iran or other countries.

It has managed to foil several attacks on both Iranian and foreign tankers during its missions in international waters.

Currently, the 80th naval fleet of the Islamic Republic of Iran, including the Alborz destroyer and the Bushehr naval escort ship, are operating in the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden to provide security for vessels including merchant ships and oil tankers.

Iran’s Navy said last week that its forces have foiled a pirate attack against a merchant ship sailing in the Gulf of Aden.

The Iranian cargo ship came under attack by unidentified pirates, who were later forced to flee following an exchange of fire with forces of the Navy’s 80th fleet.

Iran has repeatedly assured other countries that its military might poses no threat to them, insisting that its defense doctrine is entirely based on deterrence.


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