Tehran reacted quickly to the annoucment of expanded land- and sea-based missile defense systems around the Persian Gulf. They stated that the US is trying to cause increased “Iran phobia” in the Middle East. If their relations with neighboring countries are as “friendly” as Tehran says, why are regional states agreeing to house missile defense systems that offer them increased protection?
TEHRAN (Reuters) – Iran accused the United States on Tuesday of seeking to stoke “Iran phobia” in the Middle East by deploying missile defense systems in the Gulf, and said Tehran enjoyed friendly ties with neighboring states.
U.S. officials said on Sunday that the United States has expanded land- and sea-based missile defense systems in and around the Gulf — a waterway crucial for global oil supplies — to counter what it sees as Iran’s growing missile threat.
“We regard these (U.S.) measures as a conspiracy and a ploy by foreign countries to create a sense of Iran phobia,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast told state television.
The U.S. deployments include expanded land-based Patriot defensive missile installations in Kuwait, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.