'Iran will definitely strike Turkey if attacked'

Iranian official reiterates anger over Turkish agreement to house NATO facilities, threatens "grave consequences."

By JPOST.COM STAFF
December 12, 2011 10:30
1 minute read.
Iranian Army’s Land Force Academy graduation

Iranian Army’s Land Force Academy graduation ceremony 311 R. (photo credit: Reuters)

 
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An Iranian security official said that Iran would "definitely" strike NATO positions in Turkey if it were attacked, according to a Monday report by the Turkish daily Hurriyet.

“We are closely monitoring the relations with Turkey in the National Security Commission of the parliament. Iran has warned Turkey before that the deployment of the system will have grave consequences." said Hossein Ibrahimi, vice-chairman of the Iranian parliament’s national security and foreign policy commission.

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Ibrahimi also referenced a similar threat made at the end of November by Amir Ali Hajizadeh, head of the Revolutionary Guards' aerospace division. "General Hajizadeh’s remarks are entirely true and when we are attacked, it is our natural right to defend ourselves,” Hurriyet quoted Ibrahimi as saying.

Tehran has made clear its displeasure at Turkey's September decision to deploy a NATO missile early warning system, which Iran sees as a US ploy to protect Israel from any counter-attack should the Jewish state target Iran's nuclear facilities.

Once-warm relations between Iran and Turkey have been strained this year due to the missile shield and Ankara's outspoken criticism of Syrian President Bashar Assad's violent crackdown on popular unrest.

Turkey and Iran, the Middle East's two major non-Arab Muslim states, are vying for influence in the post-Arab Spring region and Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's military adviser accused Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan of setting its foreign policy to please Washington.



Reuters contributed to this report

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