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Iran’s defense chief rejects US claim of sending arms to Yemen

Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan (Photo by IRNA)

Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan has rejected the US allegation that Tehran is sending weapons to Yemen, saying the claims were made as Washington continues to supply arms to terrorists committing crimes in different parts of the world, including in Syria and Iraq.

Dehqan’s remarks came in response to US Defense Secretary James Mattis, who during a visit to Saudi Arabia on Tuesday, accused Iran of supplying missiles to Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah fighters.

The oppressed Yemeni people have stood up to the Saudi aggression, which has enjoyed full-fledged US support, by reliance on their own power and capabilities and have managed to prevent their foes from achieving their objectives, Dehqan said.

“Today, Takfiri-Wahhabi terrorists are committing crimes in different parts of the world, particularly in Iraq and Syria, with US-made weapons and munitions,” Dehqan said.

He said the American officials had better review the historical record of US military interventions and war crimes committed in Vietnam, Iraq, Somalia, Afghanistan and recently in Syria and Yemen, adding that the US leveled accusations against others to get itself out of the quagmire it has been stuck in.

US Defense Secretary James Mattis (C-R) is greeted by the Saudi military chief of staff, General Abdul Rahman Al Banyan (C-L), upon his arrival at Riyadh Air Base on April 18, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

The US defense chief and other senior US strategists should know that the era of launching military aggression, accusing others and interfering in other countries' affairs has come to an end, the Iranian minister said, adding that the US needed to avoid playing blame games against other countries.

Dehqan said the US officials also needed to address their domestic problems instead of creating new crises and fanning the flames of war in the Middle East and on the Korean Peninsula.

Yemen has been under Saudi Arabia’s military aggression since March 2015. Certain Arab countries, including the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Qatar, are partners to the Riyadh’s military aggression, which has reportedly claimed the lives of more than 12,000 people, most of them civilians.

The military aggression was launched to reinstate Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, the president who has resigned and is a staunch ally of Riyadh, and undermine the Houthi Ansarullah movement.

The US has so far sold weapons worth billions of dollars to Saudi Arabia.

In March, Amnesty International condemned the US and UK for their “shameful” weapons transfers to Saudi Arabia, saying Washington and London were fueling the serious human rights violations and war crimes in Yemen committed by Riyadh.  

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