Rouhani: It is Persian Gulf not New York Gulf

April 29, 2020 - 14:43

TEHRAN – President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday that the United States must know that the waterway in the region is the Persian Gulf and not the New York or Washington Gulf.

“They must understand the situation by the name of the place and the people who have protected it for thousands of years and stop hatching plots against the Iranian people,” Rouhani said in a cabinet meeting as Iran marked the Persian Gulf Day.

He said, “The United States has witnessed the Iranian people’s success in all areas and also in protecting the Persian Gulf waterway. Our soldiers in armed forces, the Guards [the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps], Basij, Army and police forces have always protected and will protect the Persian Gulf.”

Rouhani also described the Persian Gulf as very “important” and “sensitive” region.

“The Persian Gulf belongs to the Iranian nation and has always been and will be the Persian Gulf,” the president noted.

Talking in a ceremony marking the Persian Gulf Day on Wednesday, IRGC Navy chief Alireza Tangsiri said nobody can use a bogus name for the Persian Gulf, a reference to the U.S. State Department which recently used the false name “Arabian Gulf” for the waterway.

Tangsiri also said the Leader of the Islamic Revolution has a great interest in the Persian Gulf.

The rear admiral proposed that countries bordering the strategic waterway can expel foreign forces from the region.

The chief of the Iranian Army Command and General Staff College (DAFOOS) said on Monday that the United States is an “uninvited guest” in the Persian Gulf region.

“The Persian Gulf is like a big old house which has eight doors and independent rooms and also a yard which is shared by this eight neighbors. If a guest comes, he has to leave after a while, because a guest should not stay permanently,” General Hossein Valivand told reporters on the sidelines of a ceremony held to mark the national day of the Persian Gulf.

The top military officer noted that Iran wants the U.S. and all other foreign forces to leave the Persian Gulf region.

“We guarantee security of the Persian Gulf by the Army’s Navy and the Guards [the IRGC] and also by cooperation with other neighbors and the countries we have formed military coalition with,” he said.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said on April 20 that foreign forces’ presence in the region is the source of insecurity, instability and tension.

“We consider presence of the foreign forces, especially forces of the United States, in the region a source of tension, instability and insecurity. Their presence is illegal and illegitimate. This is our region and our armed forces must be able to patrol without hurdle,” he said in a press conference held through video conference.

He said, “This issue led to our forces’ response. It has been for thousands of years that Iran is in this region and the regional security must be provided by the regional countries, especially Oman which is in the Strait of Hormuz region.”

He urged foreign forces to leave the region and not make Iran give them warning.

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif wrote on his Twitter page on April 23 that “US forces have no business 7,000 miles away from home, provoking our sailors off our OWN Persian Gulf shores.” 

It came after U.S. President Donald Trump said he had ordered the U.S. Navy to destroy Iranian boats “if they harass” U.S. ships in the Persian Gulf.

“I have instructed the United States Navy to shoot down and destroy any and all Iranian gunboats if they harass our ships at sea,” Trump said in a tweet on April 22.

The IRGC has rejected U.S. description of the Iranian boats’ behavior in the Persian Gulf, saying such a depiction is like “Hollywood scenarios”.


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