The commander of Revolutionary Guard’s navy says ships belonging to foreign forces are only in the region to foment tensions, referring to US warships.
Alireza Tangsiri made the remarks during a meeting with Ahmed bin Harith al-Nabhani, the visiting Chief of Staff of Oman's Armed Forces, stating, “Regional countries are responsible for ensuring security in the strategic Strait of Hormuz, and the presence of foreigners is only aimed at creating discord among Muslim nations." In past years, Iranian officials have repeatedly threatened to close the world's most important chokepoints for maritime oil traffic by force in response to flaring tensions with the US.
The spillover of the Gaza war, initiated by the Hamas invasion on October 7,has led to increased attacks against the US bases in the region. Washington has also moved naval bases to the region both in the Mediterranean Sea and the Persian Gulf.
Iranian authorities have leveled up their regional tours to consolidate ties with the Arab states of the region while Tehran’s proxy militias are destabilizing the region by firing missiles and attacking vessels.
On Thursday, the United States said it has intercepted and shot down an Iranian-produced drone near the Bab el-Mandeb Strait in the southern Red Sea. A day later, Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahianmet the Houthis' envoy at the Yemeni embassy in Tehran in order to express his gratitude for the Iran-backed fighters' "support for the people of Palestine". The incident came a week after the USS Thomas Hudner, another American warship deployed in the region, shot down several one-way attack drones launched by the Houthis.
Tangsiri claimed earlier in the week that his forces had sent drones to harass the operations of the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower aircraft carrier and its strike group. The incident was confirmed and described as "unsafe, unprofessional and irresponsible" in a statement issued Wednesday by US Naval Forces Central Command chief Vice Admiral Brad Cooper.
In addition to firing ballistic missiles American targets, Houthis have fired multiple missiles and drones at Israel and attacked two ships that they thought were Israel’s.