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Tuesday, August 13, 2019, 10:54
Iran's Zarif criticizes US for 'militarizing' Gulf region
By Xinhua
Tuesday, August 13, 2019, 10:54 By Xinhua

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif speaks during a press conference in the capital Tehran, on August 5, 2019. (PHOTO / AFP)

TEHRAN — Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that the US arms sales to some regional states have turned the Gulf region into a "tinderbox ready to blow up," Press TV reported on Monday. 

The presence of more warships in the region would only lead to more insecurity

Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iranian Foreign Minister 

Zarif referred to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia's expenditure on weaponry, saying that "the US (sold) weapons worth 50 billion US dollars to the region last year." 

"If you are talking about threats coming from the region, the threats are coming from the US and its allies who are pouring weapons in the region, making it a tinderbox ready to blow up," Zarif was quoted as saying. 

READ MORE: Iran's Zarif says Tehran will leave nuclear deal if necessary

He also decried the US move to form a maritime military coalition to, what it calls, "boost security in the region." 

"The presence of more warships in the region would only lead to more insecurity," he pointed out. 

US and its allies have expressed concerns about Iran's growing influence in the region. Recently, Washington has stationed more troops, warships and bombers in the territories of its allies in the Gulf and has called for the formation of a maritime military coalition. 

ALSO READ: Iran's Zarif rebuffs US sanctions on him, Rouhani says 'childish'

Iran has opposed the US measures and stressed that the military presence of foreigners will insecure the region and has urged for the cooperation of regional states to safeguard the security of maritime transportation.  

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