A Russian Foreign Ministry official ruled out the possibility of Iran being behind a deadly attack on an Israeli-managed tanker off the coast of Oman.
"There are no indications that prove Iran's involvement in the attack," Russian Foreign Ministry's Second Asian Department Director Zamir Kabulov told Sputnik News Agency.
"We have not the slightest reason to believe [that Iran was involved in the attack] as we have no facts. When there are facts, then we will work out our position," Kabulov said.
The Russian official added Iran has not yet requested Moscow's help over the incident with the vessel.
The United States and Britain joined Israel in blaming the Islamic Republic for the strike on Thursday in which two crew members – a Briton and a Romanian – were killed.
They said they would work with their partners to respond to the attack on the Mercer Street, a Liberian-flagged, Japanese-owned petroleum product tanker managed by Israeli-owned Zodiac Maritime.
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett had accused Tehran of "trying to shirk responsibility" for the attack". Israel's foreign minister said on Sunday the incident deserved a harsh response.
Iran rejected the accusations and vowed a decisive response to any possible "adventurism".
"The Islamic Republic of Iran does not hesitate a moment to protect its security and national interests, and will immediately and decisively respond to any possible adventurism," Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said in a statement.
Khatibzadeh dismissed the US and Britain's statements as "contradictory", and said "if they have any evidence to support their baseless claims, they should provide them".
The spokesman "strongly regretted the baseless accusations" which were "false and provocative".
He also blamed them for effectively supporting "terrorist attacks against and sabotage of Iran's commercial ships" through their "silence".
Iran’s Foreign Ministry summoned Britain’s chargé d'affaires and Romania's ambassador to convey Tehran's protest, reminding the envoys that the source of instability in the Persian Gulf was not the Islamic Republic, but actually extra-regional presence, Press TV wrote.
In the first meeting, the head of the Iranian Foreign Ministry’s Third Western European Bureau on Monday expressed regret over baseless allegations raised by the British foreign secretary, saying, “These remarks, which were made in a hasty manner and without providing any proof or evidence, are rejected and strongly condemned.”
“This is not the first time that the UK has leveled hasty accusations without evidence against the Islamic Republic of Iran. The country has previously accused Iran of certain moves, which were never proved and no evidence has been ever provided to substantiate them.”
The Iranian Foreign Ministry official said the source of instability in the Persian Gulf is not Iran, but the presence of ships and troops of extra-regional countries in the region, adding, “Iran has always considered the Persian Gulf a safe waterway for safe passage of ships, and has made efforts to establish and bolster security there.”
Warning against any acts of adventurism by Israeli or any other parties, the Iranian official said the definite policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran is to defend itself and give a decisive, timely and befitting response to any act of adventurism.
The British envoy promised to relay Iran’s protest to his respective country as soon as possible.
Britain summoned the Iranian ambassador on Monday.
"Iranian Ambassador to the UK Mohsen Baharvandwas summoned today to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office," said a British government statement.
In the second summoning on Monday, the Iranian Foreign Ministry’s director general for Mediterranean and Eastern European affairs talked to Romanian ambassador in Tehran, rejecting the illegal and unacceptable allegations leveled by Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs against the Islamic Republic.
The Iranian official urged the Romanian diplomat to convey the Islamic Republic's strong protest over the issue to his country's officials.
The Iranian Foreign Ministry official said some countries intend to create insecurity and chaos in international arena by orchestrating such measures, noting that other states must remain vigilant in the face of such plots.
He emphasized Iran's principled policy, whose ultimate goal is to ensure maritime security in the Persian Gulf, the Sea of Oman and international waters.
The Romanian ambassador, for his part, said he would immediately convey the Iranian government’s protest to the respective officials of his country.
A press release handed out by Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs earlier on Monday cited "the elements presented by the country's international partners," claiming that the attack was deliberate and coordinated by Iran.
The developments came after an informed Iranian source close to the Supreme National Security Council said on Monday that the country will give a strong and crushing response to any measure taken against its national interests and security, blaming Britain and the US for the consequences of such moves against Tehran.