Libya incidents no pretext for military intervention: Iran

March 2, 2011 - 0:0

TEHRAN – The Iranian Foreign Ministry announced on Tuesday that the ongoing developments in Libya should not be used as a pretext for military intervention in the country by certain Western countries.

The statement by the Iranian Foreign Ministry came as the U.S. and its NATO allies in Europe are edging towards military confrontation with Libya's besieged government, positioning military resources for possible action in the Mediterranean.
“The incidents (that are taking place in Libya) should not be used as a pretext for any military intervention by other countries,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast told a regular news briefing.
A Pentagon official confirmed that the U.S. was assembling military muscle in the region. ''We have planners working various contingency plans. It's safe to say as a part of that, we're re-positioning forces to provide … options and flexibility,'' Colonel Dave Lapan of the Marine Corps said.
The British Prime Minister, David Cameron, told the House of Commons: “We do not rule out the use of military assets … I have asked the Ministry of Defense and the Chief of the Defense Staff to work with our allies on plans for a military no-fly zone.”
Tehran condemns violence against Libyan people
Mehmanparast said Iran condemns the use of any kind of violence against Libyan protestors and hopes that unpopular rulers would leave the scene to prevent the destruction of their country and massacre of their people by such actions.
He added that Iran is ready to offer assistance to Libya and admit the injured Libyan protesters in its hospitals if the ground is prepared.
U.S. talk of human rights ridiculous
Mehmanparast also said it is ridiculous that the U.S. officials talk about human rights.
“The U.S. officials’ apparent defense of human rights has made a mockery of this issue. The U.S. officials should account for the situation of human rights and harsh treatment of prisoners and minority groups in the U.S.,” Mehmanparast said at his weekly press briefing on Tuesday.
He made the remarks in response to U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton who has recently accused the Iranian government of violating the human rights and mistreating the protesters.
“Unfortunately, the U.S. double standard toward the issue of human rights has greatly undermined the principle of human rights,” he said.
Imam Musa al-Sadr, top foreign policy issue
Mehmanparast said that pursuing the fate of Imam Musa al-Sadr, an Iranian-born Shia cleric who vanished without a trace in Libya, is high on the agenda of the Foreign Ministry.
In August 1978, al-Sadr departed for Libya with two companions to meet officials of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi’s government. They were never heard from again, and many believe they met with foul play at the hands of Gaddafi.
“We have mobilized all our resources to find out what has happened to him. We are hopeful that we would receive good news about his fate,” the spokesman said.
Iran concerned about man-made islands in Persian Gulf
On the construction of artificial islands off the south coasts of the Persian Gulf, Mehmanparast said that it is a sensitive issue which can have a negative impact on the regional security.
The construction of artificial islands is a matter of great sensitivity and may provoke territorial disputes, negatively affecting the regional security.
“Examination of different dimensions of the issue of artificial islands is on the agenda and we will pursue the issue in cooperation with the Persian Gulf states in order to prevent security and environmental problems in the region,” he stated.
The political analysts say that the UAE may make claim of sovereignty over some Iranian islands due to the expansion of its territorial waters after the construction of artificial islands.