No justification for presence of hostile countries in regional waters: Iranian navy chief
In a further warning to hostile naval forces from extra-regional countries, Iranian Navy Commander Rear Admiral Shahram Irani said there was no justification for their presence in regional waters and that the Iran did not accept such a presence.
“Our message to non-regional and non-friendly countries is that there is enough power in our region, and there is no justification for their presence in the waters of this region,” Irani said on Saturday.
He added, however, that there is no problem if extra-regional countries come to the region to visit and exchange knowledge.
“But if they want to enter the security field, it must be said that today the Islamic Republic of Iran does not accept such a thing,” he warned.
Iranian commanders have repeatedly warned against the presence of hostile extra-regional navies in the region, saying that neither the region nor the countries hosting them would become safer by their presence.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Rear Admiral Irani referred to the latest maritime exercises organized by the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS), saying that the Iranian Navy’s Dena destroyer had a powerful presence in the exercise.
He said the operational capability of the Iranian Navy was assessed during the exercise.
“Our goal was to prove ourselves and prove our country’s defense capability and introduce the humanitarian culture of Iranians and the establishment of the Islamic Republic to the world,” Irani said.
He explained that providing humanitarian aid was part of the exercise, adding: “We want to tell the neighboring countries to make sure that the establishment of security in [regional waters]especially in the northern Indian Ocean region, can be done by ourselves, and we just need to get closer to each other and our hearts need to unite.
The IONS exercises began on March 29 off the Indian port city of Goa. The biennia featured 24 Indian Ocean Rim States.
According to Captain Farhad Fattahi, commander of the Iranian team, the country’s navy joined the event with the aim of participating in training cooperation and exchanging experiences in the field of maritime practices.