12:43 GMT +318 November 2019
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    Iranian Navy boats take part in maneuvers during the Velayat-90 navy exercises in the Strait of Hormuz in southern Iran (File)

    Commander Warns US Aircraft Carrier Not to Go Near IRGC Speed Boats - Report

    © AFP 2019 / EBRAHIM NOROOZI / JAMEJAM ONLINE
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    The warning comes after Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei claimed that the US’ recent decision to designate Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) a “foreign terrorist organisation” is rooted in America’s “rancour” against the IRGC.

    Mohsen Rezaei, a senior commander in Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), has warned the US Navy to keep its vessels, including an aircraft carrier, at a distance from IRGC speed boats in Gulf waters.

    “Mr Trump, tell your warships not to pass near the Revolutionary Guards boats”, the ISNA news agency cited Rezaei as saying on Tuesday.

    READ MORE: Strait of Hormuz May Close if Iranian Oil Exports Stopped, IRGC Navy Chief Warns

    The remarks came a day after Washington designated the IRGC as a terrorist organisation, in what Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei described as a move rooted in America’s “rancour” against the IRGC.

    “The IRGC is the vanguard both on the field confronting the enemy on [Iranian] borders and even several thousand kilometres away [in Syria] as well as on the political battleground against the enemy”, Khamenei pointed out.

    Referring to the US’ move to blacklist the IRGC, Khamenei said that “such malice will lead nowhere” and that “with the their deceit rebounding back to themselves, the Islamic Republic’s enemies — such as Trump and the idiots […] in the US government — are moving toward rock bottom”.

    IRGC head Mohammad Ali Jafari, in turn, dismissed Washington's designation, which he said “was quite laughable since the Revolutionary Guards are in people's hearts”.

    Jafari also pledged that “the Revolutionary Guards will increase its defensive and offensive capabilities in coming year”.

    READ MORE: Iran Infiltrated US Systems in Response to Its 'Insolence', IRGC Commander Says

    Earlier, Iran's Supreme Security Council reportedly designated the US CENTCOM and related forces as a terrorist organisation.

    “As a retaliatory measure to the US illegal decision [to recognize the IRGC as a terrorist organization], Iran declares the US regime a ‘state that supports terrorism’ and the CENTCOM and forces that are linked to it a 'terrorist group’”, the security council's statement, quoted by the Islamic Republic of Iranian Broadcasting state media outlet, read.

    Announcing the decision to blacklist the IRGC on Monday, US President Donald Trump boasted that this “unprecedented” move “recognises the reality that Iran is not only a state sponsor of terrorism, but that the IRGC actively participates in, finances, and promotes terrorism as a tool of statecraft”.

    READ MORE: IRGC General Vows to Defend Disputed Islands in the Gulf, Slams US Presence

    US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, for his part, confirmed that the designation will take effect one week from now, and called on other countries to follow suit.

    Iranian officials earlier warned that the IRGC's inclusion on the US terror list would be a “mistake” which would prod Tehran to equate the US military with Daesh*. Heshmatollah Falahatpisheh, chairman of the Iranian parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, said a bill to this effect had already been prepared.

    US-Iranian relations collapsed to their lowest level in decades last May, when the Trump administration unilaterally withdrew from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

    *Daesh (also known as ISIS/ISIL/Islamic State) is a terrorist group outlawed in Russia and many other countries. 

    In addition, Trump pledged to reinstate all nuclear-related sanctions against Tehran and to bring Iran's oil exports to a complete halt.


    *Daesh (ISIL/ISIS/Islamic State), a terrorist group banned in Russia and a number of other countries

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