News ID: 116515
Published: 0114 GMT April 25, 2015

Iran reaffirms continued naval presence in Gulf of Aden

Iran reaffirms continued naval presence in Gulf of Aden

Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari dismissed reports about a warning to Iranian ships in the Gulf of Aden, saying the flotilla is currently carrying out its mission in the strategic region and will not leave the waterway.

 

In an interview with Al-Alam Arabic-language news network on Saturday, Sayyari said the presence of the country's naval fleet in the high seas, including the Gulf of Aden, will continue and nobody will be allowed to inspect Iranian warships in international waters.

Sayyari declared that his forces will not leave the Gulf of Aden waters because others might want Iran to do so, Tasnim News Agency reported.

“The Iranian Navy's 34th flotilla of warships, code-named Alborz, has been deployed to the Gulf of Aden as part of routine operations to ensure security of the country's trade vessels,” he said.

The senior commander stressed that their mission is to legally ensure security.

Sayyari quashed rumors of any encounter between the Iranian naval ships and those of the US or Saudi Arabia off the coast of Yemen.

The 34th fleet of the Iranian Navy, which comprises the Bushehr logistical vessel and Alborz destroyer, left the country’s southern port city of Bandar Abbas for the Gulf of Aden and Bab el-Mandab Strait on April 8 in line with the Islamic Republic’s policy of safeguarding naval routes for vessels in the region.

US defense officials on Thursday claimed that the Iranian flotilla suspected of carrying weapons bound for Yemen had reversed course and appeared to be heading home to avert a potential confrontation in the Gulf of Aden.

They claimed that the cargo ships, accompanied by two Iranian warships, shifted course as a US aircraft carrier moved within 200 nautical miles of the flotilla and after Saudi officials said their sailors would attempt to search the ships if they tried to dock in Yemen.

Saudi Arabia launched its air campaign against Yemen on March 26a — without a United Nations mandate — to restore power to the country’s fugitive former president, Abd Rabbo Mansur Hadi, a staunch ally of Riyadh.

 

Obstruction of aid to Yemen

 

Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian reprimanded Saudi Arabia for refusing to allow the delivery of humanitarian aid to the Yemeni people.

"Saudi Arabia does not help with efforts to deliver humanitarian aid and transfer injured Yemenis for treatment,” Amir-Abdollahian said in a telephone conversation with President of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) Peter Maurer on Friday.

He called on the international community to take stronger action to dispatch humanitarian aid to Yemen, given the deteriorating human situation in the impoverished Arab country.

The senior Foreign Ministry official noted that two Iranian airplanes carrying humanitarian aid and medicine as well as injured Yemenis who were treated in Iran, left for Yemen over the past two days after obtaining legal permission, but they were forced to turn back following Saudi Arabia’s “illegal interference”.

The official again expressed the Islamic Republic’s readiness to cooperate with international organizations and send humanitarian aid and medicine to the defenseless Yemeni people.

Maurer said the ICRC has made great efforts to deliver aid to the Yemeni people and held close consultations with Saudi Arabia after the announcement of the end of war in Yemen.

The ICRC president, however, added that the distribution of aid to Yemen requires the complete end of military operation in the crisis-hit country.

He noted that the ICRC is seeking a secure way to channel aid to Yemen and transfer the injured.

The phone conversation came after Saudi fighter jets intercepted an Iranian airplane with humanitarian aid to Yemen and prevented it from entering the Yemeni airspace.

 

 

   
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