The United States has directly accused the Islamic Republic of Iran for yesterday’s “reported attacks” on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman. Attesting Tehran’s involvement, the U.S. Navy released a video purporting to show Iranian naval forces removing unexploded ordnance from a hull of one of the targeted vessels – Both of which were separately identified as Japanese and Norwegian owned vessels.
Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Washington’s assessment of Iran‘s apparent responsibility; saying: “It is the assessment of the United States Government that the Islamic Republic of Iran is responsible for the attacks that occurred in the Gulf of Oman today. This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping, and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high degree of sophistication.”
Secretary Pompeo went on to list seven separate attacks that have been attributed to the Islamic Republic since the 22nd of April – of this year, condemning the Ayatollah regime for its unprovoked attacks that presents a clear threat to international peace and security. Pompeo said: “This is only the latest in a series of attacks instigated by the Islamic Republic of Iran and its surrogates against American and allied interests, and they should be understood in the context of 40 years of unprovoked aggression against freedom-loving nations.” / “Taken as a whole, these unprovoked attacks present a clear threat to international peace and security, a blatant assault on the freedom of navigation, and an unacceptable campaign of escalating tension by Iran.”
The American top diplomat underlined that Tehran’s behavior followed the Trump Administration’s re-imposed sanctions that have crippled the Islamic Republic’s economy. That said, Pompeo insisted that economic and diplomatic efforts to curb Tehran’s malign activities do not entitle the Islamic Republic to its repeated acts of violence – and called on the international community to condemn the Ayatollah regime’s assault on the freedom of navigation and the targeting of innocent civilians. He said: “Iran is lashing out because the regime wants our successful maximum pressure campaign lifted. No economic sanctions entitle the Islamic Republic to attack innocent civilians, disrupt global oil markets, and engage in nuclear blackmail.”
While reiterating Washington’s pledge to protect U.S. forces, interests and allies in the volatile region; Secretary Pompeo announced that the Trump Administration’s policy remains unchanged. In his words: “Our policy remains an economic and diplomatic effort to bring Iran back to the negotiating table at the right time, to encourage a comprehensive deal that addresses the broad range of threats – threats today apparent for all the world to see – to peace and security.”