Monday Jan 23, 201211:36 AM GMT
'Iran can shut Hormuz if threatened'
Mon Jan 23, 2012 10:0AM
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A member of the Majlis Committee on National Security and Foreign Policy Heshmatollah Falahatpisheh
A senior member of Iran's Majlis says it is the right of the Iranian nation to close the Strait of Hormuz if US-led Western states proceed with threats to impose an oil embargo on Iran.

Iran has the right to shut the Strait of Hormuz in case of any threats and American authorities know that they cannot control global developments, said Heshmatollah Falahatpisheh, a member of the Majlis Committee on National Security and Foreign Policy on Monday.

The Iranian lawmaker stated that a recent letter sent by US President Barack Obama to Iran about the Strait of Hormuz indicated his concern about the ongoing developments in the region.

On January 15, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast confirmed that Obama had sent a message to Iran via three different channels, namely US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice, Swiss Ambassador to Tehran Livia Leu Agosti, and Iraqi President Jalal Talabani.

The Iranian legislator noted that Obama is desperately worried about the Islamic Republic's possible decision to shut the Strait of Hormuz.

In his message, the US president expressed concern over the developments in the Persian Gulf and issued threats while seeking to maintain his prestige, Falahatpisheh stated.

Tensions between Tehran and Washington over the Strait of Hormuz escalated after the US and the European Union proposed sanctions against Iran's oil sector.

On December 27, 2011, Iran's First Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi warned that imposing sanctions against the country's energy sector will prompt Tehran to prevent oil cargos from passing through the Strait of Hormuz.

The Strait of Hormuz is a narrow waterway which connects the Persian Gulf on the west to the Sea of Oman.

Statistically, the waterway is one of the world's most important shipping lanes, with a daily flow of about 15 million barrels of oil.

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