Iran’s foes to decide soon on Tehran’s fate: Moscow
MOSCOW / ABOARD THE USS ABRAHAM LINCOLN
In this file photo USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) transits the Indian Ocean. AP photoRussia’s top general said yesterday that he expects Iran’s enemies to decide in the next few months how to deal with a nuclear program that the United States and Israel have said they might attack.
In remarks that come as Russia has been voicing its differences with the West on various issues in the Middle East, General Nikolai Makarov, the chief-of-staff, was quoted by RIA news agency as saying: “Iran, of course, is a sore spot.” “There has to be some kind of decision about it now. It will be made, probably, closer to summer,” he said.
Moscow has warned adamantly against any use of force to rein in Tehran’s nuclear program, which the Western powers and Israel say conceals a plan to develop atomic weapons. The reports on RIA and other Russian news agencies of Makarov’s remarks to local journalists did not quote the general specifying which of Iran’s adversaries he was referring to, nor what they might do or when.
Lincoln passes Hormuz
Meanwhile, Iranian patrol boats and aircraft shadowed a U.S. aircraft carrier strike group as it passed through the Strait of Hormuz yesterday, ending a Gulf mission amid heightened tensions with Tehran that include threats to choke off vital oil shipping lanes. But officers onboard the USS Abraham Lincoln said there were no incidents with Iranian forces and described the surveillance as routine measures by Tehran near the strategic strait, which is jointly controlled by Iran and Oman. Although U.S. warships have passed through the strait for decades, the last time an American carrier left the Gulf, the USS John C. Stennis in late December, Iran’s army chief warned the U.S. it should never return.
Compiled from AP and Reuters stories by the Daily News staff.