quarta-feira, 16 de fevereiro de 2011
Iranian warships planned to sail through the Suez Canal en route to Syria
MK-5 Iranian Frigate photo from here
Israel's television said Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, had spoken out of turn as the Defense Ministry "had preferred to ignore" the ships' approach. Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Israel was tracking them and had alerted "friendly nations in the region" accordingly.
Israel's Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper described the two Iranian ships as a MK-5 frigate and a supply vessel, which would not present a significant danger to the Jewish state.
Still, with Israeli-Iranian tensions long running high, the theoretical possibility of the geographically distant enemies encountering each others' forces in the Mediterranean Sea was enough to send oil prices surging.
Syria is one of Israel's neighboring adversaries. It has an alliance with Iran which has deepened along with Tehran's isolation from the West over its disputed nuclear program, which the Jewish state sees as an existential threat.
"To my regret, the international community is not showing readiness to deal with the recurring Iranian provocations. The international community must understand that Israel cannot forever ignore these provocations" Lieberman said in a speech.
The U.S. reaction was cautious. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Washington was aware of the ships but had no information about what they were doing or where they were going.
Iran's semi-official Fars news agency reported on January 26 that Iranian navy cadets were going on a year-long training mission into the Red Sea and through Suez to the Mediterranean.
They were training to defend "the country's cargo ships and oil tankers" against the threat of Somali pirates, it said.
News from here