Iran, allies can keep region secure, foreign forces not needed: Commander

Press TV – Iran and its allies can maintain regional security without any need to foreign forces, says a top Iranian military commander following naval maneuvers jointly carried out by the Islamic Republic, Russia and China in the Sea of Oman and the Indian Ocean.

The drills kicked off on Friday and covered 17,000 square kilometers consisting of various tactical exercises, such as target practice and rescuing ships from assaults and fires.

Brigadier General Ebrahim Dehqani, who is in charge of the Naval Operations Department at the General Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces, made the remarks while speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the drills on Sunday, Fars news agency reported.

“Our friends will be assured [through these drills] that the maritime security can be established by the Islamic Republic of Iran and its allies and there is no need to the presence of foreign forces, especially Americans, in the region,” the commander said.

“The presence of Americans only creates insecurity in the region.”

American forces, the commander added, have left the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman for the northern part of the Indian ocean, “which proves that they are well aware of their incapability in ensuring their own security.”

The Iranian commander said the message of the drills to enemies is that their slightest mistake will face a crushing response from the Armed Forces of Iran, adding, “Joint drills will be certainly held in coming years and we will even hold similar drills with other countries in the region.”

On the third and final day of the drills, Iran’s Rear Admiral Hossein Khanzadi, chief of the navy, said on Sunday that the United States must leave the region.

“The era of inroads by the Americans in the region has ended and they have to gradually leave the region,” Khanzadi said on Sunday.

The chief of staff of the Iranian Army Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari also told reporters on Saturday that the joint naval drills can boost regional convergence and are indicative of the trio’s determination to ensure security in the region without the help of any foreign powers.