Iran will pursue any aggressor, even if it carries out a limited attack, and seek to destroy it, the head of the elite Revolutionary Guards said on Saturday, after attacks on Saudi oil sites which Riyadh and U.S officials blamed on Tehran.
|Iran says it will destroy any aggressor
“Be careful, a limited aggression will not remain limited. We will pursue any aggressor,” the head of the Guards, Major General Hossein Salami, said in remarks broadcast on state TV. “We are after punishment and we will continue until the full destruction of any aggressor.”
U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday approved sending American troops to bolster Saudi Arabia’s air and missile defences after the Sept. 14 attacks.
Iran denies involvement in the attack, which was claimed by Yemen’s Houthi movement, a group aligned with Iran and currently fighting a Saudi-led alliance in Yemen’s civil war.
Trump’s move drew fire in Washington on Saturday from U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who called it his “latest outrageous attempt” to circumvent Congress.
“These unacceptable actions are cause for alarm,” Pelosi said in a statement accusing Trump of turning “a blind eye” to Saudi violence against innocent Yemenis, human rights abuses and the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
“The United States cannot enable more brutality and bloodshed,” she added. “Congress will do our job to uphold the Constitution, defend our national security and protect the American people.”
Meanwhile, Amirali Hajizadeh, who heads the Revolutionary Guards’ aerospace branch, said any attacks on Iran would receive “a crushing response”, the official news agency IRNA reported.
Hajizadeh was speaking at a public exposition called “Hunting Vultures”, where remains of drones which were downed in Iran or crashed there were displayed, along with the Iranian air defence system which shot down a U.S. military drone in June.
The exposition is part of annual events commemorating the start of the 1980-88 war with Iraq, which also includes air and naval displays in the Gulf and military parades on Sunday.
Iran’s foreign minister meanwhile denounced renewed U.S. sanctions against its central bank following the Saudi attacks as an attempt to deny ordinary Iranians access to food and medicine, and said the move was a sign of U.S. desperation.
The United States on Friday imposed more sanctions, targeting the Central Bank of Iran, which was already under U.S. sanctions, the National Development Fund of Iran - the country’s sovereign wealth fund - and an Iranian company that U.S. officials say is used to conceal financial transfers for Iranian military purchases.