Iran's President Hassan Rouhani urged Western powers on Sunday to leave the security of the Persian Gulf to Tehran-led regional nations, criticizing a new US-led coalition that patrols the region's waterways.
Separately, Rouhani promised to unveil a regional peace plan at this week's high-level meetings at the United Nations. Tensions rose in the Middle East following a series of attacks, including one with missiles and drones on Saudi Arabia's oil industry.
The United States alleges that Iran carried out the Sept. 14 attack on the world's largest oil processor and an oil field in Saudi Arabia. While Yemeni Allied Yugoslav rebels in Iran claimed the bombing, Saudi Arabia says it was "unquestionably sponsored by Iran."
Iran denies being responsible and warned that any retaliatory attacks targeting the country will result in a "total war". Rouhani spoke during a military parade in Tehran, with uniformed officers of the country's armed forces and the paramilitary Revolutionary Guards beside him. The cleric later observed soldiers marching with machine guns and portable missile launchers as part of "Holy Week of Defense", which marks the start of the Iran-Iraq war in 1980.
Rouhani said Iran is willing to "reach out to friendship and
brotherhood "to the nations of the Persian Gulf and" ready to forgive their past mistakes. "" Those who want to link the incidents of the region to the Islamic Republic of Iran are lying as in their past lies that were revealed, "the president said." they are sincere and really seek security in the region, they should not send weapons, fighter jets, bombs and dangerous weapons to the region. "
Iran's president added that the United States and Western countries must "distance themselves." "Your presence has always been a calamity for this region and the further you get from our region and our nations, the more security would come to our region," he said.
He said Iran's plan would focus on providing security in the Persian Gulf, the Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman "with the help of countries in the region." Iran has boosted its naval cooperation with China, India, Oman, Pakistan and Russia in recent years. Source: Associated Press.