Breaking News: IRAN: Two Iranian Warships ‘Sail Through Suez Canal’: UPDATED

20 Feb

Two Iranian naval ships have sailed through the Suez Canal from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean, Iran’s state TV says.

Iranian Warships ‘Sail Through Suez Canal’ Enlarge photo  

However, canal officials disputed the claim, saying the vessels were due to arrive at the southern entrance to the canal in the Gulf of Suez later on Sunday.

The vessels would be the first Iranian naval ships to pass through the strategic waterway since Iran’s 1979 revolution.

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that Iran’s plan to send the ships through the canal en route to Syria was a “provocation”.

An Egyptian army official said the military had given its approval to Iran’s request, which has presented an early diplomatic test to Egypt’s interim government after the overthrow of president Hosni Mubarak.

Egypt’s Western allies are watching for hints of any shift in policy towards its neighbours, especially Israel, with which it has a peace treaty and supplies with natural gas.

NEWS UPDATE:

Iranian film among hot tips at Berlin film fest Play Video Iran Video:Iranian film among hot tips at Berlin film fest AFP

Iran's Ticking Time Bomb Play Video Iran Video:Iran’s Ticking Time Bomb FOX News

Preview: Iranium Special on 'Hannity' Play Video Iran Video:Preview: Iranium Special on ‘Hannity’ FOX News

CAIRO (Reuters) – Two Iranian naval ships are due to sail through the Suez Canal to the Mediterranean on Monday, Suez Canal officials said, denying a report from Iran that said the ships had already gone through the waterway.

The vessels, the first Iranian naval ships to sail through the canal since 1979, are due to arrive at the southern entrance to the canal in the Gulf of Suez later on Sunday, the officials said.

Earlier on Sunday, Iran’s Arabic language state television channel Al Alam TV reported that the ships had passed through the Suez Canal.

The military, which has been running Egypt since President Hosni Mubarak was toppled on February 11, approved Iran’s request to send the ships through the canal, an Egyptian army source said on Friday.

The request was a difficult one for Egypt’s interim government. Cairo is an ally of the United States and has a peace treaty with Israel, and its relations with Iran have been strained since Iran’s 1979 revolution.

The prospect of Iranian warships sailing through the canal into the Mediterranean for the first time since 1979 alarmed Israel whose foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, described it as a provocation.

(Writing by Tom Perry; Editing by Peter Millership)

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: