Iran’s s Navy commander says its forces have in the past few years escorted 3,200 commercial ships to ensure their safe passage in the Gulf of Aden, where pirates are active.
Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari made the remarks at the second national summit of new naval technologies in the northern Iranian city of Nowshahr on Wednesday.
The Iranian Navy chief hailed the country’s glorious history of sailing industry and said that certain states have pursued numerous plots on the Iranian shores over the past decades with the aim of stealing Iran’s resources.
“In order to gain access to our resources and [advance] their illegitimate interests in Iran, these countries tried to station in the Persian Gulf, destroy Iranian ports and push their residents away,” he said.
Iran has almost 5,000 kilometers of maritime border directly linking it to the high seas, a strategic geographical position which has turned the country into a center of attention for hegemonic powers, Sayyari said.
In recent years, Iran’s Navy has increased its presence in international waters to protect naval routes and provide security for merchant vessels and tankers.
In line with international efforts against piracy, the Iranian Navy has been conducting patrols in the Gulf of Aden since November 2008, safeguarding merchant containers and oil tankers owned or leased by Iran or other countries.
Iran’s Navy has managed to foil several attacks on both Iranian and foreign tankers during its missions in international waters.