The US does not believe Iran’s claims about sending its ships to the US coast, and consequently feels no concern in this connection. A Pentagon employee who asked not to mention his name or position in the press told ITAR-TASS that, according to their sources, such statements made by Iranian state officials are not to be trusted.
He was asked if the Pentagon considered Iran’s claims to be a threat and if this would affect the US Navy operations in the Persian Gulf area.
Earlier on that day, Commander of Iran’s Naval forces in the Caspian region Admiral Rezaei Haddad announced that Iranian ships are already on their way to the Atlantic Ocean across the waters off the South African coast.
He said that Iran’s Navy is approaching the US sea border and this manoeuvre is a message. The Iranian information agency Fars points out that this is Iran’s response to the reinforcement of the US Navy presence in the Persian Gulf.
Similar belligerent announcements addressed to the US on Iran’s part were repeatedly made in the past but later it usually became clear that they were not consistent with the reality.
Iran sends warships close to US maritime border – naval commander
A senior Iranian naval commander says his country has for the first time sent several warships to the Atlantic Ocean, close to US maritime borders. The commander of Iran’s Northern Navy Fleet, Admiral Afshin Rezayee Haddad, is quoted by the official IRNA news agency as saying Saturday that the vessels have already begun the journey to the Atlantic Ocean via waters near South Africa.
Iranian officials said last month that the fleet consisted of a destroyer and a logistic helicopter carrier, which will be on a three-month mission.
Haddad says the fleet is approaching US maritime borders for the first time. The Islamic Republic considers the move as a response to US naval deployments near its own coastlines. The US Navy’s 5th fleet is based in nearby Bahrain.
In September 2012, Iran’s Navy Commander, Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari, reiterated Iran’s plans for sailing off the US coasts to counter the US presence in its waters in the Persian Gulf.
Sayyari had earlier mentioned Tehran’s plans to send naval forces to the Atlantic to deploy along the US marine borders, and in September 2012 he said that this would happen “in the next few years”.