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Trump Administration Reviews Means for Blocking Iranian Arms Trafficking in Gulf Waters

Trump Administration Reviews Means for Blocking Iranian Arms Trafficking in Gulf Waters

Sunday, 19 November, 2017 - 08:30
Saudi Arabia accuses Iran of supplying Houthi militias in Yemen with missiles. (AP)

Washington is considering means to swiftly bolster Saudi missile defense systems as a mechanism to slow down Iran’s arms trafficking in the region, said a report published on Saturday.

Iran is known to arm regional paramilitary militias such as “Hezbollah” in Lebanon and the Houthi coup factions in Yemen.

The Wall Street Journal wrote that the Trump administration is looking at ways to quickly strengthen Saudi Arabia’s missile defenses and disrupt the flow of advanced Iranian-made weapons across the Middle East as concerns grow over a destabilizing new crisis in the region.

"The state of uncertainty is not serving anyone, but Hezbollah and its allies,” an administration official told The Wall Street Journal. “The longer it goes on, the worse it is for Saudi interests and US interests and the interest of our friends.”

US forces could raise their efforts to confiscate Iranian arms shipments passing through Gulf waters, officials said.

Meanwhile, Ali Akbar Velayati, an adviser to Iran's supreme leader Ali Khamenei, said his country "does not ask for permission from others in its defense issues and programs, to have missiles or to determine our range."

French President Emmanuel Macron had said on Friday that Tehran should be less aggressive in the region and should clarify the strategy around its ballistic missile program.

“It does not benefit Mr. Macron and France to interfere on the missile issue and the strategic affairs of the Islamic Republic, which we have great sensitivities about,” Velayati said.

“What does this issue have to do with Mr. Macron? Who is he at all to interfere? If he wants relations between Iran and France to grow then he should try not to interfere in these issues.”

France said on Wednesday it wanted an “uncompromising” dialogue with Iran about its ballistic missile program and a possible negotiation over the issue separate from Tehran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

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