Iranian officials have warned that any Israeli involvement in the US-led naval operation in the Persian Gulf would be met with a strong response.
Israeli media last week reported that the Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz had stated at a closed session of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee that Israel would provide intelligence and other assistance for “Operation Sentinel,” the US-led naval mission to bolster security for vessels in the Strait of Hormuz.
“If Israel enters the Strait of Hormuz, it will be engulfed in the wrath of the region and its smoke will rise from Tel Aviv,” Senior Advisor to the Iranian Parliament Speaker Hossein Amir Abdollahian said on his Twitter account. He further advised the US and its allies to abandon the idea of their military mission in the Persian Gulf, arguing that it will not bring peace and safety to the region as they claim.
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Abbas Mousavi stressed that any Israeli role in a maritime alliance in the Gulf is a “clear threat” to Iran’s national security.
“Within the framework of the country's deterrence and defensive policy, the Islamic Republic of Iran reserves the right to counter this threat and defend its territory,” Mousavi said.
“The military coalition that America is seeking to form with the excuse of securing maritime transport will only increase insecurity in the region,” Iranian Defense Minister Amir Hatami said in a conference call with counterparts from Kuwait, Oman, and Qatar.
Reacting to reports of Israeli willingness to join the coalition, he said it would be “highly provocative and can have disastrous consequences for the region.”
[Sources: Sputnik News, The Times of Israel]