Iranian Government Discounts Threats of Attack on Radar Station in Turkey

The Iranian government said recent threats made by members of the military and parliament that the nation could respond to a foreign threat by attacking a planned radar station in neighboring Turkey were irresponsible and did not reflect official policy, Agence France-Presse reported on Wednesday (see GSN, Dec. 14).

"We reject those views completely," Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said in an interview with a Turkish government-run news organization. 

"The Islamic Republic of Iran's official stance on Turkey is based on deep brotherhood and friendship," Salehi said.

Last month, the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard's aerospace command, Amir-Ali Hajizadeh, said Iran would attack the long-range radar station that the United States intends to install in Kurecik, Turkey, if it feels a foreign assault is imminent. 

Then in December, Iranian parliament member Hossein Ebrahimi claimed his country had the "right" to attack a planned NATO missile defense system that would incorporate the radar station in Turkey. The missile shield is largely being established as a response to fears of a potential Iranian ballistic missile attack on Europe.

Ankara responded to those threats by expressing its worries to Salehi, who told the Turkish Anatolia news agency the comments were reckless and that the individuals who made them had been chastised. 

Salehi said only he, Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad have the authority to issue statements on Tehran's official foreign posture. "Other statements are considered personal views," the minister said (Agence France-Presse/Google News, Dec. 14).

 

December 15, 2011
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The Iranian government said recent threats made by members of the military and parliament that the nation could respond to a foreign threat by attacking a planned radar station in neighboring Turkey were irresponsible and did not reflect official policy, Agence France-Presse reported on Wednesday .