Tehran: The commander-in-chief of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, Hossein Salami, on Saturday threatened to turn any country that dares to attack Iran into a “battlefield”. The Iranian Major General’s words came in response to the US’ decision to send troops to the Persian Gulf. “We will never allow any war to encroach upon Iran’s territory,” Hossein Salami said during the inauguration of a military exhibition of US drone remains, which were shot down by Iran. “Whoever wants their land to become the main battlefield, go ahead,” he was quoted as saying by Efe news.
Tensions between Tehran and Washington have been steadily escalating. The Donald Trump administration accused the Islamic Republic of last week’s bombing of two refineries belonging to the Saudi state-owned oil company Aramco using 10 unmanned aircraft. In response for this attack, the US announced on Friday the imposition of further sanctions against Iran’s national bank, in addition to sending a limited number of American troops to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, a relatively moderate decision as military options were raised.
Iranian authorities had already warned that they would respond firmly to any attack, even if it was limited, a point on which Salami stressed on Saturday. “Be careful, limited aggression will not remain limited. We are after punishment and we will continue until the full destruction of any aggressor,” said the Iranian military official. He also added that Iran has a great capability to shoot down any drone, as already happened to a US unmanned aircraft over the Strait of Hormuz in June. Meanwhile, US Defence Secretary Mark Esper told reporters on Friday that Washington’s decision to send troops to Saudi Arabia was “defensive in nature”. (IANS)